Worth the effort
R. Hendershot | San Francisco | 10/28/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hearing critics and reviewers call this a 'vanity project' in a world so obscenely self-obsessed is maddening, and ridiculous. First of all, nearly every recording ever made had *someone's* name on it somewhere, and someone's artistic vision guiding that recording - every recording is a 'vanity project' in some fashion. It's called self-expression. None of which has anything to do with the quality of this particular album. Sure, it's a little strange, if you mostly listen to music made by artists who got their start playing in shopping malls or on Star Search. But let's zoom back to the real world where lots of people have record collections and have heard a few things not played on top 40 radio for just a moment:
This album is a brilliant and exciting work of instrumental guitar from a master. It's filled with humor and subtlety, and exhibits a wide range of expression and feeling. It's also boldly psychedelic.
I once heard from a friend that Belew has always said that his favorite guitarist is George Harrison. I don't know for sure if that's true, but after I heard this album I believed it. It plays like a perfect companion to Harrison's 'Wonderwall Music', and I've always wondered if it wasn't directly influenced by that seminal soundtrack recording.
If you're familiar with Adrian Belew, you'll know already that his recordings differ from each other greatly in style and tone - it's hard to like them all equally even if you're a fan. This is my personal favorite of Belew's solo work, and one of my favorite recordings of any artist. It's out of print, so if you spot a copy, snap it up!