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Bill Frisell - Guitar in the Space Age / Critic's Pick review

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Among Bill Frisell's many gifts as a guitarist is the ability to provide a vibrant new voice to the roots music of his youth. In the past, that has largely been defined through jazz standards and Americana classics. Last year's electro-chamber adventure, Big Sur, opened the repertoire to a wider stylistic array of West Coast inspirations. But on the fine new album Guitar in the Space Age!, perhaps his most accessible record in 15 years, Frisell expands his source material to include the pop, surf, twang and rock sounds that caught his ear as a teenager.

But anyone thinking Guitar in the Space Age! is some retrofitting exercise needs to strap in and give this recording a full-length test flight. He doesn't take the melodic liberties here that he has with some of his Americana explorations, but the guitarist does toy with the temperament, tone and tempo of the music to make the album's 14 songs sound like a sonic mural that is best enjoyed as a single suite rather than a composite of single-tune snapshots. READ THE FULL REVIEW.

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