Friday, 25 May 2018

Steve Tibbetts - Life Of, album review

Napping or Jungian Archetype

Tibbetts is new to me, though he has an established and highly regarded musical career as an innovative, distinctive guitar player, on this album his Martin 12-string acoustic. He has been with the ECM label since 1981.

In a quote I found out there, he has referred, I’m sure sarcastically, to aspects of his music as,

We did many interviews for the Choying albums, and writers were eager for me to talk about plumbing Jungian archetypes or pulling up buckets of inspiration from the primal substrate and bringing already-formed music into corporeal existence, giving it back to the world and so on ad nauseam.  If all could gaze online at my recording studio Steve-web-cam they’d see vacant stares, gnashing of teeth, rending of garments, confusion, and naps.

and I would say this album Life Of resides more in the nap rather than rending arena, and by ‘nap’ I am not being pejorative but rather locating its calm, meditative and therefore soothing atmospherics. The guitar is plucked and notes bent and even at times, as in Life of Joel, riffed in fast repetitions, and the piano is a constant if delicate accompaniment, percussion and other sounds adding ambient variations – but it is always fundamentally as far from gnashing as a toothless but very comforting pet Kintamani.

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