Back Home

( 5 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
Judging by the mellow, contented songs that dominate Back Home, Eric Clapton finds himself in a particularly grounded place right now, lending the disc a subdued and inviting energy. That aura is intensified by the presence of guests as varied as John Mayer, Steve Winwood, and Robert Randolph the last of whom turns in some stellar dobro work, all of whom are sympathetic enough to Clapton's intent that their presences are more felt than instantly heard. In keeping with his tendencies to seek out unusual covers for Claptonization, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer swept a wide swath of the sonic spectrum to come up with some of the disc's most intriguing cuts -- notably a ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
Judging by the mellow, contented songs that dominate Back Home, Eric Clapton finds himself in a particularly grounded place right now, lending the disc a subdued and inviting energy. That aura is intensified by the presence of guests as varied as John Mayer, Steve Winwood, and Robert Randolph the last of whom turns in some stellar dobro work, all of whom are sympathetic enough to Clapton's intent that their presences are more felt than instantly heard. In keeping with his tendencies to seek out unusual covers for Claptonization, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer swept a wide swath of the sonic spectrum to come up with some of the disc's most intriguing cuts -- notably a languid, almost churchly take on the Spinners' "Love Don't Love Nobody" that's veined with eloquent picking. He's every bit as effective when he puts the guitar on the back burner to showcase his underrated vocal abilities, best demonstrated by a sweaty, horn-dappled version of "I'm Going Left" which Stevie Wonder wrote with his late wife, Syreeta Wright. The R&B bent extends to many of the disc's originals as well: "One Track Mind" has a cognac-smooth groove that'd do Al Green proud, while "Say What You Will" interweaves that Memphis vibe with a reggae rhythm that's a little more subtle, a little more sensual, than Clapton's earlier forays into island sounds. A similar silkiness permeates his playing as well, as the bracing fire-and-ice interchanges of yore have given way to quieter explosions, as evidenced by the liquid-silver lines he unskeins on the Vince Gill–penned "One Day." Yes, he slips into Hallmark card territory now and again especially on the doting-dad ditty "So Tired", but it's hard to begrudge the man his happiness. In fact, as long as he keeps channeling it into the directions he does here, it's mighty easy to share in it.
All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Eric Clapton claimed in the press release for Back Home, his 14th album of original material, that "One of the earliest statements I made about myself was back in the late '80s, with Journeyman. This album completes that cycle in terms of talking about my whole journey as an itinerant musician and where I find myself now, starting a new family. That's why I chose the title. It's about coming home and staying home." With that in mind, it becomes clearer that the studio albums Clapton released during the '90s did indeed follow some sort of thematic logic. 1989's Journeyman did find Clapton regrouping after a muddled '80s, returning to the bluesy arena rock and smooth pop that had been his signature sound as a solo artist. He followed that with 1994's From the Cradle, where he explicitly returned to the roots of his music by recording an album of blues standards. Four years later, he released Pilgrim, a slick album that had Clapton strengthening his collaboration with producer/co-writer Simon Climie who first worked with EC on his electronica side project T.D.F.. If Pilgrim touched on father issues, 2001's Reptile loosely returned Clapton to his childhood complete with a smiling boyhood shot of him on the cover and found the guitarist struggling with a seemingly diverse selection of material, ranking from '50s R&B to James Taylor. After a brief blues detour on 2004's Me and Mr. Johnson, Clapton returns to the sound and feel of Reptile for Back Home, but he doesn't seem to be as tentative or forced as he did there. Instead, he eases comfortably into the domesticity that isn't just the concept for the album, it's reason for being. In fact, the album doesn't need "back" in its title -- ultimately, the album is just about being home which, if the center photo of Clapton at home with his three young daughters and wife is to be believed, looks alarmingly similar to the set of Thomas the Tank Engine, complete with a painted rainbow shining through the window. While it's hard to begrudge the 60-year-old guitarist for finding a happy home after all these years, what is puzzling about this calm, comfortable album is that Clapton is equating domestic bliss with a glossy, consciously classy sound that's swept clean of dirt and grit, or even the blues. Consequently, Back Home is pitched halfway between the lite contemporary soul of Pilgrim and Clapton's time as a Michelob spokesman in the late '80s. Each track rides a tight, professional groove -- sometimes a bluesy vamp, sometimes a reggae jam, usually something soulful but relaxed -- and while instruments sometimes bubble up from the mix sometimes it's Clapton's guitar, but just as often it's Billy Preston's organ, or occasionally a synth straight out of 1987, the emphasis is always on the smooth, shiny surface. Unlike such peers as Bob Dylan, Elton John, and the Rolling Stones who revitalized their recording careers with back-to-basics moves that stripped their music down to its essence, Clapton seems to harbor an aversion to what he built his reputation on, whether it was the lean, sinewy blues of the Yardbirds and Bluesbreakers or the psychedelic freak-outs of Cream, or even the rootsy rock he learned from Delaney & Bonnie in the '70s. Based on Back Home, it really does seem like he considers Journeyman ground zero for his solo career, but instead of replicating the well-balanced mix of rock, pop, and blues that made that record one of his best solo efforts, he settles into a tasteful adult pop sound that makes this record the ideal soundtrack to a pleasant Sunday afternoon at home with the family.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/30/2005
  • Label: Reprise / Wea
  • UPC: 093624939528
  • Catalog Number: 49395
  • Sales rank: 112,458

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 So Tired (4:47)
  2. 2 Say What You Will (4:35)
  3. 3 I'm Going Left (4:02)
  4. 4 Love Don't Love Nobody (7:13)
  5. 5 Revolution (5:00)
  6. 6 Love Comes to Everyone (4:35)
  7. 7 Lost and Found (5:21)
  8. 8 Piece of My Heart (4:22)
  9. 9 One Day (5:20)
  10. 10 One Track Mind (5:04)
  11. 11 Run Home to Me (6:18)
  12. 12 Back Home (3:32)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Eric Clapton Primary Artist, Guitar, Vocals
Billy Preston Piano, Keyboards, Hammond Organ
Steve Winwood Synthesizer, Guest Appearance
Andy Fairweather Low Guitar
Simon Clarke Horn, Track Performer
Simon Climie Keyboards
Nathan East Bass, Bass Guitar
Paul Fakhourie Guest Appearance
Steve Gadd Drums
Vince Gill Guest Appearance
The Kick Horns Ensemble, Track Performer
Nick Ingman Strings
Abraham Laboriel Sr. Drums
Roddy Lorimer Horn, Track Performer
Stephen Marley Guest Appearance
Pino Palladino Guest Appearance
Tim Sanders Horn, Track Performer
Paul Spong Horn, Track Performer
Chris Stainton Guest Appearance
Sharon White Background Vocals
Annie Whitehead Horn, Track Performer
Gavyn Wright Strings
Lawrence Johnson Background Vocals
Doyle Bramhall II Guitar
Toby Baker Guest Appearance
John Mayer Guitar
Abe Laboriel Jr. Drums
Robert Randolph Dobro
Nicky "Misschief" Shaw Percussion, Drums
Isobelle Griffiths Strings
Michelle John Background Vocals
Technical Credits
George Harrison Composer
Beverly Darnall Composer
Eric Clapton Composer, Art Direction, Audio Production
Simon Climie Composer, Programming, Producer, Digital Editing, Audio Production
Vince Gill Composer
Joseph B. Jefferson Composer
Bob Ludwig Mastering
Susannah Melvoin Composer
Charles Simmons Composer
Jeremy Stacey Composer
Stevie Wonder Composer
Syreeta Wright Composer
Doyle Bramhall II Composer
Mike Elizondo Composer
Lee Dickson Guitar Techician
Jonathan Shakhovskoy Digital Editing
Catherine Roylance Art Direction
Nicky "Misschief" Shaw drum programming
Joel Evenden Digital Editing
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
Rating Distribution

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(3)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    from a 30 year clapton fan

    this album is tired. not one track i feel like listening to for a second go round. I'm looking very forward to The Road to Escondito with JJ Cale. Maybe there will be more inspiration there. Sorry

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    With "Back Home", Eric gets it right

    Four years after "Reptile", Eric 'Slowhand' Clapton is back with this great album. I've listened to every song on the album and I have to say what a joy it is to listen to. (and play along with too)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Fun and Eclectic Album

    This is a different type of album from EC. The album is upbeat and loaded with horns and back up singers. While only half the album was written or co-written by Clapton, he avoids a tired sound that is not his own by not recording 3-4 songs penned for him (ex. written by Jerry Lynn Williams). The covers are great "Love Don't Love Nobody" is an extremely admirable rendition loaded with emotion. "I'm Going Left" is a fun song as is the cover of his dear friend George Harrison's "Love Comes to Everyone." "One Day" is extremely strong vocally and has some fiery guitar solos. One of the more intriguing tracks is the Clapton original "One Track Mind", which finds Clapton taking both a fun dobro solo and a nice electric solo. "Lost and Found" falls just short with its abrupt cut-off at the 5:20 mark that seems like a glitch. The Dual Disc version is highly recommended as it contains 4 EC/Back Home guitar picks and has the full album in Surround sound as well as a 20 min video. The Guitar God is not prevelant on the album but it's great to hear some fun music from EC.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Very Enjoyable!!

    If you like Clapton, you will not be disappointed in this album. The artist never ceases to amaze me and like wine, he gets better with age. I just purchased BACK HOME today so I have not yet decided which song is my favorite..so much to choose from. I do wish this had a video to go with the album, but other than that, it is really great. Hope you all enjoy it as much as I am..

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews