Musician’s Retreat Proves Fruitful

ARTICLE BY KENT JACKSON (STAFF WRITER) Published: September 15, 2011

After Hazleton musician Lenny Kucinski retreated to a ranch in California, the songs for his latest compact disc started flowing.

“I’ve been playing guitar for 35 years of my life. I never had it like that: all the songs inside of me to have to come out. I wrote more songs this past year than I did in 35 years. It broke down barriers, opened my eyes to a lot of things,” Kucinski, 43, said after attending a retreat for a Christian organization called Band of Brothers in Arroyo Grande, Calif.

Kucinski equates the breakthrough to a heart surgeon opening a blockage, a metaphor he uses in one of the new songs, “Heart Block Blues.”

The CD is called “The Battle Begins,” and the group that Kucinski assembled for the recording sessions is called Vessel, a name indicating that Kucinski wants to be filled with and used by God. Read more…

Online Review – The Battle Begins by Vessel

Posted by Sigourney Soul on Sep 24, 2011 at damesofpa.com

This past week, the Christian rock group Vessel released their debut album The Battle Begins. The effort was was spearheaded by producer and lead guitarist Lenny Kucinski and recorded, mixed, and mastered at Studio Independence, a state-of-the-art home recording facility.

Joining Kucinski as the core of the “band” are drummer/co-producer Ivan Justofin and bassist/vocalist Joe Whalen. A further group of diverse musicians were enlisted to perform various musical parts throughout the album, which greatly adds to the sonic diversity of the album itself. As the album’s liner notes state; “Vessel is not somuch a traditional ‘band’ but a collection of individuals from many different bands and walks of life…” While all the songs on the album are consistantly forged from the believer’s point of view, there is a good variety of situational lyrics and an even greater variety of musical genres and styles. These range from harder-edged pop/rock to folk, blues, jazz, funk, and theatrical arrangements.

At the CD relese party this past Sunday (9/18), Kucinski gave a brief explanation of each song on the album, as well as the role(s) that each of the fourteen musicians played in putting this album together. He also gave a brief background on how the album came together, stating that the original inspiration for this project came from a California retreat called Band of Brothers, after which Kucinski entered into a prolific writing period, penning the bulk of songs on The Battle Begins. He also noted his lofty goal of creating a new genre with this album called “Epic Christian Pop Rock”. Read More…