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Bill Frisell - Is That You?

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Is That You?

Bill Frisell

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Language available : english

Recorded in 1989 while Frisell was still a member of Naked City, Is That You? finds the guitarist already trending away from that band's scattershot assault and toward the more pastoral leanings he would embrace in the upcoming decade. At its best, as on the title track, Frisell creates nostalgic but heartfelt melodies that have the sense of being a soundtrack to a bittersweet movie. Wayne Horvitz' "Yuba City" is also evocative and very much in keeping with his other work from around that time, all sumptuous melodic hooks overlaying somewhat clunky rhythms. There are other nice touches here and there (the charming "Rag," for instance), but too often the gauziness that is an inherent problem with much of Frisell's music comes to the fore. While his cover of "Chain of Fools" chugs along with some dopey panache, "The Days of Wine and Roses" threatens to evaporate into the mist altogether. Fans of his later work may welcome this approach and, indeed, consider it one of his most attractive attributes, but those listeners hoping to hear more of the bite and devil-may-care attitude shown in his work with Zorn may feel suffocated.
© Brian Olewnick /TiVo

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Is That You?

Bill Frisell

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1
No Man's Land
00:06:42

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

2
Someone in My Backyard
00:02:51

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

3
Rag
00:04:07

Bill Frisell, Writer, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

4
Is That You?
00:06:52

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

5
The Way Home
00:06:01

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

6
Twenty Years
00:02:46

Bill Frisell, Composer, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

7
Chain of Fools
00:03:31

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

8
Hello Nellie
00:04:11

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

9
The Days of Wine and Roses
00:03:41

Bill Frisell, MainArtist - Henry Manciny & Johnny Mercer, Writer

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

10
Yuba City
00:05:44

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

11
Half a Million
00:04:05

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

12
Hope and Fear
00:01:07

Bill Frisell, MainArtist

1990 Nonesuch Records 1990 Nonesuch Records

Album Description

Recorded in 1989 while Frisell was still a member of Naked City, Is That You? finds the guitarist already trending away from that band's scattershot assault and toward the more pastoral leanings he would embrace in the upcoming decade. At its best, as on the title track, Frisell creates nostalgic but heartfelt melodies that have the sense of being a soundtrack to a bittersweet movie. Wayne Horvitz' "Yuba City" is also evocative and very much in keeping with his other work from around that time, all sumptuous melodic hooks overlaying somewhat clunky rhythms. There are other nice touches here and there (the charming "Rag," for instance), but too often the gauziness that is an inherent problem with much of Frisell's music comes to the fore. While his cover of "Chain of Fools" chugs along with some dopey panache, "The Days of Wine and Roses" threatens to evaporate into the mist altogether. Fans of his later work may welcome this approach and, indeed, consider it one of his most attractive attributes, but those listeners hoping to hear more of the bite and devil-may-care attitude shown in his work with Zorn may feel suffocated.
© Brian Olewnick /TiVo

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