A guitarist who has played with Racer X and Mr. Big, Paul Gilbert is what is commonly known as a “guitar player’s guitar player.” He can do things that others dream about. His speed is immediately noticeable, and on Fuzz Universe he makes that known with the title track and plenty elsewhere. But it isn’t just about speed. It’s about tone, rhythm, technique, empathy and so much more. Gilbert appeals to more than just guitar players because he can also snag a gorgeous melody on his way up to Mount Olympus. The instrumental wizardry of “Blue Orpheus” isn’t something to be taken lightly. Even when he slows down in spots during “Will My Screen Door Stop Neptune,” there is a harmonic flow that goes beyond the basic notes. “Don’t Rain On My Firewood” takes the blues and turns it upside down, while the metallic tones of “Plastic Dracula” flow forth with a passion missing in much of the music’s more commercial artists. The rhythmic injections of “Blowtorch” make one scratch their head. He’s ridiculously athletic with his instrument and deserving of every accolade sent his way.