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Ågren, Jimmy: Close Enough For Jazz

Little Feat mastermind and former Mother of Invention Lowell George has been dead for far too many years, having produced but some but not nearly enough music in his lifetime to satisfy the hordes that recognized him as a certifiable genius. Luckily for those who miss Lowell, there's Jimmy Ågren, a young dude from the Land of the Midnight Sun, come to teach us a thing or two about American music and one of its great fallen leaders.

Like George before him, Ågren has a fascination for taking standard blues rhythms and allowing them to mutate into something more akin to avant garde composers, all while still writing songs with a strong melodic flair that even the most mainstream listener would be hard-pressed to resist.

"In The Corner" brings with it images of a fly buzzing round the banks of a river while four boys from the backwoods sit around and harmonize in fashion that can be best described as pleasantly unsettling. Elsewhere, Ågren plays with the basic purpose of the guitar, twisting and turning its most basic timbre into Zappa/Vai-ish sonic spaghetti on the title track, or a churning, dying stomach of the soul on "Troubles Gone," which might be the sound of Robert Johnson, Howlin' Wolf and Captain Beefheart serenading souls crossing into the afterlife.

But Ågren can still play with unadulterated beauty, as he does on "Lester Howlin Dog" and "Where Are They Going" and the highly Texasified "Bring Your Stuff." Those tracks, like all the rest, are fantastic and make you scratch your head and ask one more time, "Are you sure this guy's from Sweden? Damn, I thought he had to from down on the Delta, or down from Louisiana way."

Track Listing:
1. Can I Be Your Cowbell (4:08)
2. In The Corner (4:18)
3. New Machine (4:19)
4. Close Enough For Jazz (5:28)
5. Who's Lennard(5:52)
6. Lester Howlin' Dog (4:34)
7. Troubles Gone (4:47)
8. Fifty Thousand Notes (4:20)
9. Where Are They Going (4:29)
10. Bring Your Stuff (4:36)
11. Make Me Moan (XXX)

Total Time: 46:00

Added: April 12th 2004
Reviewer: Jedd Beaudoin
Related Link: More Information
Hits: 3609
Language: english

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