Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Left of Cool
Genres: Country, Jazz, Pop, Rock
What's left for Bela Fleck? Bluegrass, rock, jazz, classical, rock, folk--he's explored them all. After an epic, Grammy-winning live album, Fleck returns to the studio for a surprisingly subtle, intricate suite of instrum... more »
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What's left for Bela Fleck? Bluegrass, rock, jazz, classical, rock, folk--he's explored them all. After an epic, Grammy-winning live album, Fleck returns to the studio for a surprisingly subtle, intricate suite of instrumentals--and a number of vocal tracks--combining his usual daring on banjo with mandolin, synths, and theremin. The record is a dreamy soundtrack of reggae, pop, world beat, and techno, merging into an ambient-vibe-spin-club-funk-jazz (such a cumbersome label for his agile music). The most satisfying moments come with the most lovely melodies--as on the lilting "Big Country"--when Fleck's traditional soul rises with a clear voice through the virtuosity and studio wizardry.--Roy Francis Kasten
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Member CD Reviews
Andy C. from WINCHENDON, MA
Reviewed on 11/4/2006...
There are some good tunes on this CD, but be warned that Futureman sings on a few of the not so good ones... not what I was expecting from a Flecktones album!
Too Cool For Words
Steve Vrana | Aurora, NE | 01/17/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"His first release since the in-concert Live Art 2-CD set, Left of Cool continues Bela Fleck's genre-bending journey into finding innovative applications for the banjo. For the uninitiated, the banjo (at worst) is associated with the in-bred geek playing "Dueling Banjos" in Deliverance or (at best) it's still little more than an instrument for bluegrass music. This album (or any of the Flecktones other albums) will go a long way toward dispelling that myth.I've always enjoyed Fleck's exceptional skill as a banjoist, whether it was in more traditional settings like Tasty Licks and New Grass Revival or his early solo work on the Rounder label. With the Flecktones he incorporates bluegrass, jazz and Third World rhythms to create a unique hybrid of these diverse styles. [There's even a couple of vocals by Dave Matthews--yes, THAT Dave Matthews.]Put this in your CD player and get ready to be transported to a musical universe where Earl Scruggs and Bill Monroe rule jointly with Miles Davis and John Coltrane. This has to be heard to be believed--amazing stuff! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED"
An eclectic collection of great music that defies labels.
John Heyrman | Berea, KY USA | 09/30/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Anyone musically open-minded enough to listen to Bela Fleck and the Flecktones in the first place will be highly rewarded by listening to this album. Even more exciting and wide-ranging than most of their other albums, "Left of Cool" is a picture of a group of creative musicians who worry not a bit what you wish to label their music (jazz, bluegrass, rock, or whatever...) The album's highlights range widely from the catchy "Communication," with guest vocals from Dave Matthews, to the beautiful and meditative "Shanti." The Flecktones venture further into vocals than usual, but most of the album is still instrumentals, featuring Fleck's great banjo playing, as well as the outstanding rythym section. This group can jam in almost any format. Very highly recommended."