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John Wetton - New York Minute (with The Les Paul Trio) CD (album) cover

NEW YORK MINUTE (WITH THE LES PAUL TRIO)

John Wetton

 

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2.08 | 4 ratings

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The Ploot
2 stars I can only surmise from this odd little set (only 37 minutes long) Wetton was not the singular act on the bill that night in 2013 but, rather, one among an assemblage of artists willing to make perfunctory remarks about colon-rectal cancer awareness before a lukewarm "charity gala" audience. On the other hand, it may just be a boring, uninspired, stand-alone performance and nothing more.

Here we have a disjointed collection of cover songs rendered by Wetton, accompanied by the Les Paul Trio (huh?) as well as two passing references to cancer. I doubt the fourteen people in attendance (judging by the ripple of unenthusiastic applause) even noticed the plugs/PSAs.

As for the set list, I personally like every song on it BUT the majority would probably have been better presented - and likely received - by the original composers (Fagen, Henley et al) Obviously, Marvin Gaye was unavailable and, mercifully, Bob Dylan did not appear. I'm baffled by John's half-hearted renderings of his own "Heat of the Moment" and "Battle Lines". Both would have been better covered by Hank Azaria in any number of character voices. For me, the only song containing even an ounce of passion is Brian Wilson's "God Only Knows", although I personally prefer the original (Olivia Newton- John's cover is quite lovely, too). Wetton has long had a justified respect for Wilson's compositions, as evidenced by his charming tribute to the Beach Boy, "Voice of America". For this gig, however, a medley of surf and hot rod tunes might have gone over better.

For me "New York Minute" (the album - not the song) is an unnecessary record. It could have been cut by thirty-three minutes and offered as a Beach Boys tribute single. I can only award it two stars.

The Ploot | 2/5 |

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