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Robbie Robertson

( 3 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Robbie Robertson was once asked why he waited 11 years after the breakup of the Band to release a solo project, and he replied, "I wasn't so sure I had something to say." One can hear a bit of this thinking in Robertson's self-titled solo debut; it's obvious that he didn't care to revisit the country- and blues-flavored roots rock that had been his bread and butter with the Band, and at the same time Robertson seemed determined to make an album that had something important to say, and could stand alongside his legendary earlier work. Looking for a moody and atmospheric sound, Robertson teamed up with producer Daniel Lanois, who had previously worked with U2 and Peter ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Robbie Robertson was once asked why he waited 11 years after the breakup of the Band to release a solo project, and he replied, "I wasn't so sure I had something to say." One can hear a bit of this thinking in Robertson's self-titled solo debut; it's obvious that he didn't care to revisit the country- and blues-flavored roots rock that had been his bread and butter with the Band, and at the same time Robertson seemed determined to make an album that had something important to say, and could stand alongside his legendary earlier work. Looking for a moody and atmospheric sound, Robertson teamed up with producer Daniel Lanois, who had previously worked with U2 and Peter Gabriel, two artists whose work obviously influenced Robertson's musical thinking while he was making the album they both appear on the album as well. As a result, Robbie Robertson is an album that represents both a clear break from his past, and an ambitious attempt to take his fascination with American culture and music in a new and contemporary direction. It's highly ambitious stuff, and the album's ambitions sometimes prove to be its Achilles' heel. Robertson's collaboration with U2, "Sweet Fire of Love," sounds like a rather unremarkable outtake from The Joshua Tree, with the group's aural bombast subsuming the ostensive leader of the session, while "Fallen Angel," "American Roulette," and "Somewhere Down the Crazy River" find Robertson exploring the same iconography of the Band's best work, but without the same grace or subtle wit. And it doesn't take long to realize why Robbie only took two lead vocals during his tenure with the Band; his dry, reedy voice isn't bad, but it lacks the force and authority to communicate the big themes Robertson wants to bring across. Despite all this, Robbie Robertson does have its share of pearly moments, especially on the bitter "Hell's Half Acre," "Sonny Got Caught in the Moonlight," and "Broken Arrow" a performance more subtle and effective than Rod Stewart's better-known cover. Robbie Robertson isn't the masterpiece its creator was obviously striving towards, but it's an intelligent and often compelling set from an inarguably important artist, and it comes a good bit closer to capturing what made the Band's work so memorable than the latter-day efforts from Levon Helm and company.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/25/1990
  • Label: Geffen Records
  • UPC: 720642416020
  • Catalog Number: 224160
  • Sales rank: 36,019

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Robbie Robertson Primary Artist, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Background Vocals
BoDeans Background Vocals
Peter Gabriel Keyboards, Vocals
Maria McKee Vocals, Background Vocals
Ivan Neville Vocals, Background Vocals
Rick Danko Vocals, Background Vocals
The Edge Guitar
Eluriel Tinker Barfield Bass
Sammy Bodean Vocals, Background Vocals
Bono Bass, Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals
Terry Bozzio Drums
Hans Christian Bass
Adam Clayton Bass
Bill Dillon Guitar, Background Vocals
Gil Evans Horn
Garth Hudson Keyboards
Manu Katché Percussion, Drums
Larry Klein Bass
Abraham Laboriel Sr. Bass
Daniel Lanois Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Vocals, Background Vocals, Omnichord
Tony Levin Bass, Stick, Stick Bass
Larry Mullen Jr. Drums
Bill Dillion Guitar, Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Peter Gabriel Producer
Robbie Robertson Producer
Pete Levin Arranger
Martin Page Programming, Producer, drum programming
David Bottrill Engineer
Cary Butler Programming, Engineer, drum programming
Thom Cadley Engineer
Jeff DeMorris Engineer
Marc DeSisto Engineer
Gil Evans Arranger, Horn Arrangements
Gary Gersh Executive Producer
Jay Healy Engineer
Daniel Lanois Producer
Bob Ludwig Mastering
Patrick McCarthy Engineer
Mark McKenna Engineer
Jim Scott Engineer
Chris Isca Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(2)

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2013

    After 25 years, this disc is still amazing. It's real music, be

    After 25 years, this disc is still amazing. It's real music, beautifully written. And at $5, it's a steal.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Robbie Robertson jumpstarts his career

    This is definitely THE most underrated album of 1987. After an eleven-year absence in the music scene, Robbie Robertson finally knew that fans of The Band needed a solo album from him. However, there are almost no traces of The Band on this album. Instead, Robbie Robertson puts forth a dense, mainstream album and has at his production aide, none other than Daniel Lanois (who came of producing classic albums for Peter Gabriel and U2 - they both appear on this album). Just about every song in this album is a pure classic. My absolutely favorite is "Broken Arrow." It is a very lovely and subtle song that has the theme of love but no mushiness. Plus, it even has an unlikely back-up group consisting of former Frank Zappa drummer Terry Bozzio, L.A. session bassist Abe Laboriel and Peter Gabriel (on keyboards!). "Sweet Fire Of Love" is one of the most searing-tracks on here (even though I'm not in U2's stuff), and the most powerful tracks on here are definitely "American Roulette" and "Hell's Half-Acre," both driven by Tony Levin's Chapman stick. My least favorite is "Testimony" - I don't know why, it just is. Still, this is one album that deserves to be in Rolling Stone's Top 500 Albums of All-Time. I never tire of listening to it. (Unfortunately, Robbie Robertson has never been able to match this album's success.)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews