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Steve Tibbetts - A Man About A Horse CD (album) cover


Steve Tibbetts


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.11 | 9 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Minneapolis guitar auteur Steve Tibbetts has been soaring fast and low beneath the sweep of our cultural radar for some years now, maintaining a musical vision built more around integrity than fashion. He may in fact be the best guitarist you've never heard, in part because, even after long exposure, it's hard to pinpoint his influences or classify his style: too ethereal for mainstream rock; too aggressive for ambient easy listening; and with a sensitivity to World Music far beyond the horizons of his northern Minnesota hometown.

This year 2002 album is (in my limited experience with his work) quintessential Tibbetts, typically building layers of overlapping liquid guitars over a perfect storm of exotic percussion, in this instance borrowed from the foothills of Kashmir: tables, gongs, shakers, and so forth. Individual track titles are meaningless: the entire album flows together with remarkable unity, sounding as if it was improvised on the spot and then carefully enhanced in post-production with a dizzy panoply of effects.

Rarely is there an actual melody to latch onto: most of it is a dreamscape of atmospheric rhythms and ethnic textures, blending pinpoint acoustic clarity with fuzzed-out electronic fury. It's an almost cinematic experience, in places resembling the soundtrack to a Central Asia action film. Sometimes delicate, at other times surprisingly harsh, the album as a whole is never less than compelling, and gives newcomers an ideal introduction to a unique (and unfairly overlooked) musical talent.

Neu!mann | 4/5 |


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