Beautiful Game

The Beautiful Game

5.0 2
by Acoustic Alchemy
     
 
Greg Carmichael has done more than merely survive the death of Acoustic Alchemy founding member and partner Nick Webb; the guitarist has turned the loss into an opportunity to create a whole new ensemble vibe by collaborating with formerly supporting members of the duo. The biggest differences on this label debut (after nearly a

Overview

Greg Carmichael has done more than merely survive the death of Acoustic Alchemy founding member and partner Nick Webb; the guitarist has turned the loss into an opportunity to create a whole new ensemble vibe by collaborating with formerly supporting members of the duo. The biggest differences on this label debut (after nearly a decade with GRP) is that Carmichael is more open-minded toward spontaneous interaction with other instruments, and doesn't mind laying back a bit on the strings. On "The Angel of the South," his and Miles Gilderdales' dark guitar lines snap along over Frank Felix's rolling samba bass groove and hypnotic percussion fills; Guy Barker's Latin trumpet flavors come in later in the tune than they need to. Despite its Spanishy title, "The Panama Cat"is a simmering retro-soul/blues, with a reflective acoustic easing over a constant, jumpy wah-wah click line throughout. The reggae beat of the title track will remind AA fans of the classic "Jamaican Heartbeat," but its moody ambience and occasional hypnotic Terry Disley piano swirls make it sound like a 3rd Force tune. "Hats of Magic" creeps along coolly with sound effects, a trip-hop groove and the dreamy interaction of guitar and Snake Davis' sax. For those averse to the exciting changes, "Big Sky Country" is typical, loping AA trademark stuff all the way. Another unique idea is having Steven Jones produce second versions of both that tune and "Trail Blazer" with an all-Nashville cast complete with appropriate steel guitar twangs, harmonica dobro, and violin. Webb would be proud of his compadre's tribute to moving on.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/23/2000
Label:
Higher Octave
UPC:
0724384894627
catalogNumber:
48946

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Acoustic Alchemy   Primary Artist
Jerry Douglas   Dobro
Sam Bush   Violin
Greg Carmichael   Guitar
Snake Davis   Saxophone,Human Whistle
Geoff Dunn   Drums
Viktor Krauss   Bass
John Parsons   Guitar
Richardson   Harmonica
Simon Hale   Keyboards
Scooter DeLong   Percussion

Technical Credits

Richard Bull   Programming,Producer,Engineer
Greg Carmichael   Producer,Liner Notes
Klaus Genuit   Engineer
Matt Marshall   Executive Producer
Dave Sinko   Engineer
Janet Wolsborn   Art Direction
Jamie Durr   Engineer

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The Beautiful Game 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had just finished a mid-term and needed some sonic relief for a drive along a backcountry road in the southwest near the Rio Grande River. 'Angel of the South'was the perfect groove to set the mood for a drive among the pecan groves and chile fields. With the addition of Guy Barkers' trumpet, I felt like an angel of the southwest was guiding me. Sometimes when such a hard groove is laid out and you are bopping in your vehicle, others notice you're onto something smoking! This describes 'Panama Cat' to a tee. Snake Davis on the saxophone slithers in and out of the groove with the guitars seamlessly. The special effects underneath the acoustic lead line really put the melody out in front and says, 'Listen to me.' With 'Trail Blazer' I felt I had stumble on an Allman Brothers track hidden somewhere in the archival vaults. The lilting harmony guitar parts and the piano create a vivid soundtrack to go along with the pastoral sky and desert landscaped mountains looking towards the east on my reflective southwestern drive. For me, this was definitely a five star production. A job well done goes out to Greg Carmichael and rest of the players of Acoustic Alchemy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Admittedly, being a fan for over 10 years and owning all previous albums, there would be little arm twisting to get me to buy the latest album from Acoustic Alchemy. However, this album turned out to be an instant favorite. Alchemy have gone beyond the death of guitarist Nick Webb to new heights in music. The songs are big, bold, and full of life. The sound is amazing. One thing that has always been true of AA is that they are diverse and that really shows in this CD. They are able to roll Jazz, New Age, Country, and Reggae into one impressive album! Fantastic musicianship was plenty as well. I have no doubt that this CD will be among my favorites for a long time.