By Frank Ruggiero of GenuineDynamite.com
The New York Times
--Alyssa Lora, The New York Times
Mazzella's show demonstrated his range as a guitar player. The opening set was comprised mostly of originals with titles like "Azalea," "Adolescence" and "Regression." It was fascinating to see how he brings an abstract thought to musical form. After the originals, Mazzella played a couple of cover songs. Stevie Wonder's "Higher Ground" transformed a single guitar into an entire band coming from his nimble fingers. It was amazing. After a short break, Mazzella moved on to some flamenco-influenced arrangements. Regardless of what he played, I was mystified.
Mazzella grew up in New York and started playing guitar at age thirteen. He played in rock and heavy metal bands in clubs until he learned "all the Eddie Van Halen solos" and felt as if he had nowhere to progress. He found a new challenge in classical guitar and flamenco. The new format allowed him to expand his music much further.
We here in Northern Arizona are lucky to have the opportunity to see this guitar master.--Jason Campbell, Flagstaff Live
Mazzella makes a convincing argument for inclusion among rock's new generation of guitar heroes with this striking instrumental interpretation of the U2 hit. He does an astonishing job in creating the energy and pace of a full band with only one guitar. His fingers move like lightening and with a precision that will boggle the mind. This well-known cut is an excellent introduction to "The Birth," a collection of vivid and intricately constructed original compositions. --Larry Flick, Billboard Magazine
Long Island Live
Mazzella's performance at Heads and Tails in Roslyn elicited more than a few jaw-dropping moments from the audiences perspective. Watching the musician at work was akin to observing a painter possessed at the canvas. Every nerve attuned to his instrument. Every thought connected to a musical note. Mazzella dazzled those in attendance with a hour-long display of an ability that only a combination of natural talent and almost fanatical devotion to practice could produce.
The 10 song set was comprised of all original music save one. A mind-boggling rendition of U2's "Where the streets have no name." Somehow, Mazzella duplicated the entire feel of the original version in addition to recreating most of the instrumental backing of the song, on one guitar! The original material highlighted both Mazzella's technical mastery of the instrument and the depth of his imagination. A firm knowledge of a host of musical genres was evident with elements of rock, folk, blues, jazz, classical, and Eastern music threading their way through his compositions.
During "Another Place, Some Other Time" It was easy to imagine a musical conversation between Stanley Jordan and Michael Hedges as Mazzella employed both musicians' approaches, the result of which was a highly unusual hybrid. Later, he played a tribute to the guitar innovations of Eddie Van Halen, in which he coaxial violin and brass sounds from his guitar.
Perhaps the most impressive of them all was "Azalea/Obstacles of life/The Birth" With this trilogy, Mazzella pulled together every musical nuance within his grasp creating an art gallery of moods and colors.
--Long Island Live