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Jack Bruce - Shadows in the Air CD (album) cover

SHADOWS IN THE AIR

Jack Bruce

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.12 | 13 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
2 stars I'd say this album is pretty average in the solo discography of the ex-CREAM vocalist-bassist and songwriter. Among the 15 tracks there are a few revisitations of old songs such as the Cream classics 'Sunshine of Your Love' and 'White Room' (featuring Eric Clapton), but they actually feel rather lame and unnecessary for a listener remembering the powerful originals so well. The 62-minute album, co-produced by Kip Hanrahan who has also co-written several songs with Bruce, surely wouldn't have suffered from some harvesting. Overall this is slightly blues and Latin flavoured rock. No prog in sight, which is the usual case with Bruce anyway. The list of musicians is long, although most of them appear on a limited number of pieces. For example reeds & brass players are colouring only the short and, in my opinion, uninteresting 'Boston Ball Game 1967'. Other songs I don't much care about tend to be the bluesiest ones such as 'The Angel's Liar', which is the other of the two tracks guesting Dr. John on organ.

'52nd Street' -- not to be mistaken for the Billy Joel song of the same name -- is one of several songs featuring congas to give a (relatively mild) Latin flavour. Gosh, this monotonous song is plain boring. But let's deal with the songs I enjoy more. 'Heart Quake' is a fine low-tempo blues ballad with Jack Bruce's piano in the centre and featuring Gary Moore on guitar. As a composition per se 'Directions Home' is very monotonous but it has a lot of feeling, and the combination of the fast hand-clap rhythm pattern and the meditative nature of the song itself is personal. 'Milonga' is a slow, moody, piano-centred song with a gorgeous emotional effect. The short closing track 'Surge' doesn't seem to have anything else than the vocals and drums (there are two drummers playing on this album and both are present on all tracks) but at least that's a nicely unconventional way to end an album.

Well, how to rate a basically well done veteran musician's album with some great tracks and so many mediocre pieces in the overextended length? Which way to round my 2 stars? Maybe I'll choose two stars only, as opposed to the sole previous review rating of four stars. This is not a bad album, just a little boring in my opinion.

Matti | 2/5 |

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