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Al DiMeola - Land Of The Midnight Sun CD (album) cover


Al DiMeola


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.96 | 178 ratings

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The Owl
Prog Reviewer
1 stars TECHNIQUE + MINDLESS SPEED is NOT equal to Good Music

This marked the emergence of a VERY negative trend in music, namely that technique and speed were far more important than creating music and actually communicating.

Al DiMeola for me epitomized a lot of things that went wrong with the jazz-rock fusion movement, which started off so incredibly innovative and exciting, Somewhere along the way, it changed from being about exploring bold new musical ideas to rather juvenile game of "I CAN PLAY FASTER THAN YOU JACK!!" Without ANY of the sheer musical depth of his former boss Chick Corea or a master like John McLaughlin or Miles Davis, Al burst out of the starting gate just whipping off scales at 19,000 mph but saying little to NOTHING in the process except, "I CAN PLAY REALLY FAST ".

Compositionally, most of the pieces here are not much more than textbook mathematical exercises, save for the Bach piece which actually gets a decent reading. Al's vocal spot with "Pictures Of The Sea" is pretty non-descript and pointless. Only "Short Tales From The Black Forest" stirs any interest, only because of Chick Corea's musicianship. On "Suite- Golden Dawn", Jaco Pastorious tries so danged hard to get Al to loosen up and play with some soul, but alas, 'twas not to be.

If you like super-speed shred guitar and mindless pyrotechnics for their own sake, this might be for you, otherwise, don't bother with this technique-ridden snoozefest. Al DiMeola sure proved he was far more TECHNICIAN than MUSICIAN.

The Owl | 1/5 |


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