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Sonny Landreth - From the Reach

From The Reach

Sonny Landreth

Landfall Records

Available from Sonny Landreth's web site.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Bob Gottlieb
(taoboy@cox.net)

Right from the beautiful subdued tones, but sharp cover photograph (the beautiful booklet packaging follows this theme) to the opening track with a trading of guitar solos with Mark Knopfler, you realize that a lot of thought and planning has gone into this disc. Once again, with his vision and dexterity, this slide guitar wizard takes us on a sonic adventure into areas that are hardly explored let alone mapped out. This time he does it with sharp and pointed songwriting. He wrote all the tunes on the disc except The Goin' On, which he co-wrote with Wendy Waldman, and with the help of several musicians that he wanted to collaborate with. He invites some of his favorite fellow guitar masters from a variety of different genres to join with him on these collaborations. Mark Knopfler, Eric Clapton, Eric Johnson, Vince Gill, and Robben Ford jump aboard for the adventure, as well as singer Jimmy Buffett and the iconic New Orleans pianist and vocalist, Dr John. But make no mistake this is not one of those throwaway star-studded discs; this is an incisive disc and a showcase for the dexterity and musical giftedness of all on the disc. Just take a listen to his interplay with Eric Johnson on, The Milky Way Home, a stunning instrumental cut, the guitars interplay and push each other to extend the reaches of the known galaxy. Right from this into Storm of Worry, a slower blues number that has him exchanging riffs with Eric Clapton. Further on we bring in shades of Country Rock with his trading of guitar licks and vocal leads with Vince Gill on The Goin' On, which takes the stepping-stones of Pure Prairie League's work to a new level.

There is not a weak cut on the disc, the additional players all add to the sum total of the project that has utilized David Ranson on bass, Michael Burch on drums and percussion, Steve Conn on keyboards, Sam Broussard on acoustic guitar, Tony Daigle and Brian Brignac on percussion. The stunning photography of Jack Spencer is featured and adds volumes to the design of the whole project, which was done by Megan Barra, and the stunning production work by Sonny Landreth and Tony Daigle that pervades the whole disc. No matter how it is sliced this is a disc that will stand up to the test of repeated listening, as new levels are constantly revealed.

Track List:

  • Blue Tarp Blues
  • When I Still Had You
  • Way Past Long
  • The Milky Way Home
  • Storm Of Worry
  • Howlin' Moon
  • The Goin' On
  • Let It Fly
  • Blue Angel
  • Überesso
  • Universe

Edited by: David N. Pyles
(dnpyles@acousticmusic.com)

Copyright 2008, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.

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