Top critical review
on 22 February 2014
Ok. I'm ready for you to call me a too formal and uncompromising guy, but this is to me one of the few dispensable Pat Metheny records (I own, and mostly love, about 40 of his albums, from Bright Size Life to Kin).
I understand different points of view, though. For example his right to relax and simply have a good time making a non emotionally demanding, dramatic, moving or cerebral music (by the way other guitar greats have done so, v.g. John Scofield or Bill Frisell). I also consider, as another reviewer suggested, that this album could be a wise move in order to attract new followers to his body of work as a whole. So, no problem, I will not condemn Pat to the eternal fire for this. Musicians are human beings, and have their right to change, play, try a new register, embody a transitory different character, relax, have fun, experiment, even if that leaves some fans baffled or disappointed.
But that doesn't change the fact that this album is what it is. In my humble opinion, a masterfully well executed piece of good-time, entertaining music, which probably could've been written and played by someone else. I'm not interested in lounge, smooth jazz and so on. To me this album lacks the most notable and unique Pat Metheny impressions as an artist (which have to do with virtuosity accompanied by emotion, depth, a feel of trascendece and spiritual quest) and in that sense, is a disappointing one. Could I give this album 5 stars as if it was Offramp, Secret Story, The Way Up and many more ? Definitely not. Just enjoyable.