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The High Sign/One Week: Music For The Films Of Buster Keaton
Bill Frisell
The High Sign/One Week: Music For The Films Of Buster Keaton
Genres: Jazz, Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
 
  •  Track Listings (19) - Disc #1

With Frisell on acoustic and electric guitars, Kermit Driscoll on basses, and Joey Baron on percussion and drums, this disc offers a somewhat delirious blend of experimental jazz to accompany two Buster Keaton films, The H...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Bill Frisell
Title: The High Sign/One Week: Music For The Films Of Buster Keaton
Members Wishing: 4
Total Copies: 0
Label: Nonesuch
Original Release Date: 2/28/1995
Release Date: 2/28/1995
Genres: Jazz, Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
Styles: Avant Garde & Free Jazz, Jazz Fusion, Modern Postbebop, Bebop, Comedy & Spoken Word
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 075597935127, 075597935141, 603497074068

Synopsis

Amazon.com
With Frisell on acoustic and electric guitars, Kermit Driscoll on basses, and Joey Baron on percussion and drums, this disc offers a somewhat delirious blend of experimental jazz to accompany two Buster Keaton films, The High Sign and One Week. Frisell firmly believes that jazz is the best musical accompaniment to Keaton's brooding and often intellectual slapstick, but his compositions dare the listener to impose very modern sounds over comedies from an era associated more with quaint singsong ballads and playful ragtime. Many not initiated into jazz esoterica may find Frisell's militantly unmelodic improvisations anachronistic, distracting, and perhaps even too highbrow for Keaton's good-natured pop-culture spirit. The musicians may be having fun, but what about the potential movie audience? --Joseph Lanza

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CD Reviews

Short & sweet
N. Dorward | Toronto, ON Canada | 09/21/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Bill Frisell released this disc in tandem with his music for a 3rd Keaton film, _Go West_. Unwary consumers might assume that if they're looking for the better deal in terms of CD length, they should get this one, since it's got music to two films....but in fact this CD doesn't even break the 40-minute mark, as _The High Sign_ & _One Week_ were shorts while _Go West_ was a full-length feature. That said, a CD's value usually has little to do with its duration, & of the two discs I actually strongly prefer this one.They are very different. _Go West_ has a few skeletal themes--riffs, really--that are cycled through in order to match the peaks & troughs of the film's narrative. It's an album that is mostly carried by Frisell's extended soloing, sometimes bittersweet or comically lugubrious, sometimes fiercely discordant & rhapsodic. _High Sign/One Week_ is quite different, more gentle & subtle, with less focus on prolonged or hard-edged soloing, & with more focus on the acoustic guitar. I've seen Frisell perform _One Week_ in tandem with the film, & it works surprisingly well; as a standalone CD it also is quite effective.It's a pity that the freewheeling energy of the Frisell/Driscoll/Baron trio was never caught in the studio: these two somewhat sepia-toned Keaton projects are the only studio recordings by the group, & to get a sample of their more varied & off-the-wall treatments of other material you need to turn to the Gramavision _Live_ disc or the handful of trio tracks on _Have a Little Faith_ (especially the bizarre, over-the-top cover of Madonna's "Live to Tell"). Still, this is a lovely, very playable disc which I've always listened to with pleasure."