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Most of the tracks are meditations on a particular snippet or phrase, some of which (at least) are from Taj Mahal's earlier songs. The only thing approaching an actual song structure is his cover of "Stand By Me", but the song is rendered slowly and loosely with such a minute attention to each detail that it ends up being very similar to the other pieces, even if it instantly recognizable. This rendition uses its ponderousness to heighten the harmonic tension (waiting for that next chord you know is coming...!) as it strays somewhat afield from what is a well-known and beloved, but rather by-the-numbers standard and is a really fresh take on a song covered by many artists.
The sound production is very good, the music is extremely clear and crisp, and Taj Mahal's vocals sound great. His singing on those tracks that have vocals is much more expressive and emotional than on most of his songs, because the format of the performances leaves huge wide open spaces for him to explore each phrase over and over, especially in the aforementioned "Stand By Me", "Rolling On The Sea", and my personal favorite, "Mary Don't You Weep", which expounds upon a phrase about Moses parting the Red Sea heard on "Linin' Track" from "De Old Folks At Home", another intimate and personal album from Taj Mahal that I love.Read more ›
Some folks want consistency and familiarity; other folks want new experiences and originality. McDonald's isn't successful because it is good. McDonald's is successful because they have done a good job of very consistently making mediocre food. People know exactly what they will be getting: They have had it before and they know they will be get pretty much exactly the same thing every time they go there. Lots of people like McDonald's simply for that reason. I've asked a bunch of people who eat at McDonald's if they like the food. The responses were pretty consistent--basically "It's O.K." They ate there because they like the fact that McDonald's is a known and familiar thing rather than something they really liked.
But, there are people who will stop at completely unknown restaurants knowing full well that the food will likely be unfamiliar and that it could just as easily be bad as good--that is O.K. because it beats the hell out of stopping at McDonald's and getting the same old boring, mediocre stuff.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've been a Taj Mahal fan for many years, and to me this is the freshest, most exciting thing he's done in a long time.Published on July 31, 2012 by ohiokdy
After repeated listenings, why I don't know, this album has just gotten worse. If one compares it to MEETING BY THE RIVER, it really palls. Read morePublished on June 28, 2003 by Mr. Pete