11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Set the Americana button to stun!,
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This review is from: Big Sur (Audio CD)
This record is an audiophile's dream - the recording is absolutely superb, clear class A detail and space. Even on the worst stereo in my house it sounds like the musicians are in the room with you. This was my main reason for buying the record, after hearing the quality of the opening track, so I must confess I'm only casually familiar with Frissel's music, although I will certainly be buying more.
The music is a playful, intricate and often challenging exploration of American themes, textures and structures - so it veers from elegiac, pastoral elegance to surf bops, blues and layers of grunge mixed with old-timey strings. You can picture wide expanses of American landscape, visions of the prairie and a bustling sense of progression. The combination of the strings and Frissel's ultra-cool guitar is an interesting one, although I found the lack of a bass instrument hard to get used to at first, despite the fact that it lends the music a sense of space and 'old, weird' mystery. There are dominant musical themes which are repeated, tying the whole set together effectively and these are complicated with characteristically surprising twists and turns.
The packaging - with a beautiful bridge photo and cool artwork - deserved to be printed on less-tacky paper, its really glossy and horrible!