Thursday, March 20, 2008

Something new from Daniel Lanois

I got into Daniel Lanois just five years ago... long after he’d established his awesome reputation as a producer (for U2, Peter Gabriel, Bob Dylan and the Neville Brothers) and as a solo artist.

His new album, “Here Is What Is,” came out this week. Wanna hear a track?

Click here to stream “Moondog” on my Vox blog. Danny’s steel-guitar chops are not to be ignored.

Lanois got a film crew to document the making of this album. Embedded below is a trailer for the “Here Is What Is” documentary.

Judging by that, the ratio of fartsy to artsy could be troublesome. But I still might un-ass $60 for the limited-edition deluxe CD/DVD package. Then again, I might not.

Lanois will screen the movie at L.A.’s Vista Theatre next Thursday – two showings, with live performances also. Maybe that’s the move.

Reviews of the album have been mixed. “Highbrow shtick,” wrote Jim Farber in the New York Daily News. “We’ve heard all these tricks before....”

All Music Guide’s Thom Jurek was more harsh: “Lanois has lost his way as a musician.”

But Matt Gewolb of Crawdaddy hails the new album as “a brilliant achievement.”

I can tell you this: My favorite Daniel Lanois track of all time is “Fire,” from his 2003 CD “Shine.”

If I could’ve made more episodes of “Kingpin,” I would have written a love scene between Yancey Arias and Sheryl Lee around this tune. (The second verse in particular.) Click here to listen.


dj said...

He's from just up the highway from me and have friends that still work in his old studio there.

Yeah,ussualy when a artist switches from "Dan" to Daniel,you know he is turning into a "artist" instead of just a musician and engineer.

Jeff said...

I think he's brilliant as a producer and musician, but sort of self-indulgent (not to mention boring) as a recording artist - as if he wants to be a "roots Brian Eno" or something. I tried very hard to get into "Shine," and finally gave up. But again, major props for the production work.

Blaark said...

I'd concur that Lanois' abilities are best employed when collaborating with other people... If you really wanna hear him shine I'd suggest you check out his production and playing on the Emmylou Harris album "Wrecking Ball"-- stark and moving beyond words...

Ashley said...

I'm with you on "Fire". Damn fine song.