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Trey Gunn - One Thousand Years CD (album) cover


Trey Gunn

Eclectic Prog

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4 stars Now here is a real swing for those who dig true instrumental prog! Trey GUNN is of course the bass player for the new KING CRIMSON and is also a very talented musician as you can clearly hear here. "1000 Years" parallels Sylvian and Fripp's - The First Day in many ways. Credits include Pat Mastelotto (Drums) and some guy named Serpentine (who has a great dark vox). What I find striking here is that no guitarist is credited and yet throughout the album appears to be full of Frippish acid laced guitar solos...I am told that these are created via Trey and his bass like Frippertronics......Amazing!!!! Songs a full in texture and sound great on the ol stereo. For those who would like a bass workout , this CD is right down your road!

Report this review (#28870)
Posted Saturday, March 13, 2004 | Review Permalink
Dan Bobrowski
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Trey Gunn played the Chapman Stick on this recording and does an amazing job filling the holes with, dead-on, Fripp style guitar voicings. You'll find yourself returning to the sleeve to check if Fripp's on this. The unearthly female vocals of Serpentine send shivers down your spine. Gunn also handles some vocal chores, more spoken than sung. There is a lot of long ambient moments which slow things down a bit. Killing for London and The Screen Door and the Girl are the highlights, while the Night Air is a good opener.
Report this review (#28871)
Posted Friday, March 26, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars The first solo album from bassist/guitarist from King Crimson. Hard to classify, the music mixes jazz, rock, ambient into instrumental and spoken/sung pieces.

The short opener "The Night Air" is a very jazzy song with Trey Gunn doing the vocals. "The Screen Door And The Flower Girl" starts with a cool "guitar" solo and continue with vocals in a Crimsonesque fashion. "Killing For London" is one of the jazz/rock mixed songs - starts with a solo again before Trey Gunn/Serpentine start to sing together. "Real Life" is a quiet instrumental - the typical darker track that can be found in the ProjeKcts. "Into The Wood" is in the same vein as the previous track, with background vocals and longer solos. "The Gift" is a beautiful soundscape - the influence of Robert Fripp's work is clearly visible on that track. "Take This Wish" is again a jazzy track - but this time a bit boring - that fades into the last song of the album, the dark instrumental "1000 Years" - another soundscape-like track.

Rating: 84/100 (very good)

Report this review (#75377)
Posted Tuesday, April 18, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars One Thousand Years is a beautiful work; a really fine first solo album. More than that, it is a must-have for progressive, eclectic music enthusiasts; however, there are many other sub-genre fans that would enjoy this, too. One Thousand Years is a rich rhythmic fabric that at first blush may seem repetitive to casual listeners. Nothing could be farther from the truth. One Thousand Years is seamless in its organization and mood, and should be viewed as a single work rather than a collection of separate musical projects. Just the fact that pauses between tracks are very brief or non-existent is essential; each piece leads into the next in a natural way. The length of each track is just right; they are quite succinct and very attractive. One Thousand Years is primarily about rhythms and exhibits a subtle influence by often unarticulated female voices. The vocals are restrained, almost muted and this brings a real positive tension to the music; especially when Gunn breaks into a stick solo. His effects setup gives his instrument real sustain that can confuse even a trained ear, but leaves the listener with a definite sense of satisfaction. The production is very professional.

"The Night Air" has a hypnotic and raw rhythmical introduction. The female vocals, sometimes overtone chanting and harmonic singing, are a perfect complement to the percussion and stick; together they have a transporting quality about them. The lyrics are sung by Gunn and, presumably, Serpentine, creating a pleasing blend. There's a brief pause, then "The Screen Door And The Flower Girl" might seem to erupt out of the Night Air. Gunn is superb in his stick solos and his vocal touch is very mellow. Bob Muller's performance is very tight. "Killing For London" is really impressive. Pat Mastelotto's work on the drums and the Gunn's stick leap out at you. The whole thing is primitive and very infectious; it has a real primal sense about it that contrasts well with the male and female voices chanting along at various times. "Real Life" begins with ghost-like electronically treated female breathing sounds. Then a ratcheting sound bursts in on this eerie environment. The percussion almost sounds like Australian aboriginal stick drumming. Gunn adds a driving base guitar line that brings the whole piece together; his stick playing simply soars above this lovely racket. Then, with little warning, we are brought "Into The Wood". A plucked steel string cycle pervades. There's a punctuated vocal chanting and virtuoso stick solo that seems to take turns leading the composition forward. "The Gift" is a magical and mournful composition led entirely by multiple layers generated by Gunn's stick, controlled with a volume pedal, and echo effects. "Take This Wish" takes over with an ever so slightly aggressive theme. The tabla is made-to-fit in this track, punctuating the atmosphere. The male vocals are gloomy and soft, sometimes whispered. Xan joins Gunn in the chorus to ".take this wish away." Before you realize it, "1000 Years" is on you. Layer upon layer of Gunn's favorite string instrument and voice waft to and fro, leaving you with an impression of motion, like being on a calm sea listening to the rhythm of the waves.

Report this review (#145974)
Posted Friday, October 19, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars If there is one thing that links all of the musicians who have played for Captain Bob in Crimson over the years, it is that they are all exceedingly clever. Trey Gunn is no exception, and his many talents are displayed very effectively on this, his debut solo album.

I bought this a while ago as a direct result of listening to Gunn's work on the Discipline label sampler (Sometimes God Hides), which was one of my earlier reviews on the site. I'm glad that I did get this, because when you feel like listening to someone expressing himself utterly freely, without the pressure of big record label expectations, and experimenting as if his life depended upon it, then this album is for you.

Of course, there are obvious similarities between this album and his parent band. For a start, the word and sound eclectic screams out at you. In addition, I cannot believe that Fripp himself did not contribute on lead guitar, so similar are the passages to his work. He, nor, indeed, anyone else, is credited, though.

Trey Gunn is a master stick bass player, and it is this instrument that is at the heart of all the weird happenings and goings on in the album. The vocals provided by Serpentine to support Gunn are also highly worthy of mention. Together, they create an eerie soundscape.

Percussion also features largely in the album. Gunn's band mate, Pat Mastelotto, provides some superbly understated drum work on the outstanding Killing For London, blending perfectly with Gunn's stick to create a morbidly fascinating rhythm. Bob Muller provides the rest of the percussion work, and a very fine job he does as well.

This is not the type of album you will want to take your partner to dance to. Nor is it one that will have you marvelling at the symphonic atmosphere, which is wholly absent.

What it will do, though, when you are in the mood for such music, is have you fascinated and interested in how a set of ambient sounds can be mixed together to set a wholly interesting and clever scene.

Rating this type of album is always difficult. It is very good, and, as I say, very clever. It is not, though, an album you will have in your disc player with any great frequency.

Therefore, I rate this album a very strong three stars. This is not just recommended for Crimson completionists, but also for those who love ambient, electronic, and eclectic prog.

Report this review (#311601)
Posted Wednesday, November 10, 2010 | Review Permalink

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