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Multi-instrumentalist, composer and noted producer Bob Drake transmits the vibe of a mad scientist at work. As a member or producer of numerous cutting edge progressive rock bands, as well as throughout his lengthy solo career, Drake has generally found ways to mingle various forms of Americana with abstract motifs.
This reissue of his first solo album, recorded during 1992-93, features drummer Dave Kerman (of 5UU's and Thinking Plague) on selected tracks. Drake's outlandish lyricism might suggest that he's communicating with the gods of abstraction. The superb musician spins a prog rock/folk/electro-organic mood with a country & western twang, jarring time changes and darkly woven theme pieces. Drake injects folksy violin choruses and an off-kilter blues groove into "Weeds, a slightly twisted, foot-stomping hoedown. Elsewhere, he overlays whispery vocals atop multi-layered rock grooves, intimating an avant-garde take on the Beatles.
Ultimately Drake manages to intertwine the tried and true with a deeply personalized modus operandi, mimicking a surrealist painting where life parallels a misty dream. Now, that's entertainment! Zealously recommended.
Track Listing: The House; Weeds; The Statue; Rainy; Spiders; The Drawing; Plates; Going Somewhere; The
Sawblade; Death Valley; The 13th Animal; Precarious Glimmering; The Cemetery Trees; Good
Personnel: Bob Drake: all instruments; Dave Kerman: drums (selected tracks).
Years ago now--in Rhodesia--listening to Voice of America with Willis Conover I heard Bunk Johnson play When The Saints Go Marching In, and Billie Holiday sing Don't Explain. I knew then there was no other life for me than jazz.