Place You're In

Place You're In

2.4 9
by Kenny Wayne Shepherd
     
 

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It's been the better part of five years since this onetime guitar prodigy last issued a studio album, so it's not altogether surprising that he'd be in a -- so to speak -- different place than he was when he left off. Even so, The Place I'm In represents a from-the-ground-up rethinking, the most significant element of which is Shepherd's decision to assumeSee more details below

Overview

It's been the better part of five years since this onetime guitar prodigy last issued a studio album, so it's not altogether surprising that he'd be in a -- so to speak -- different place than he was when he left off. Even so, The Place I'm In represents a from-the-ground-up rethinking, the most significant element of which is Shepherd's decision to assume vocal duties for the first time in his career. He's got an unexpectedly wizened voice for a guy in his 20s, which accounts for the likable gruffness of the loping, conversational "Hey What Do You Say" and the head-shaking weariness of "Get It Together," which stands as the disc's bluesiest cut. More than ever, Shepherd and his band are staking out traditional hard-rock territory, a decision that pays off nicely on "Alive," which puts a semi-grunge veneer on a Zeppelin-styled stomper, as well as on "Spank," a feisty little shuffle that finds him trading verses with Kid Rock. Yes, there's enough of Shepherd's trademark riffing to satiate diehards -- particularly on the incendiary, album-closing instrumental, "A Little Bit More" -- but he's clearly intent on proving he's got more than one trick up his sleeve. And for the time being, at least, those sleeves look to be packed with potential.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Sean Westergaard
Five years separate Live On and its successor, The Place You're In, and the time allowed Kenny Wayne Shepherd to grow as both an artist and as an individual. He's not only writing the majority of his material, he's singing most of it as well. His guitar playing has become more nuanced, and he's moved squarely into the world of album rock from his blues-rock background. Even the cover and publicity photos reflect the difference, showing a darker, decidedly grown-up Kenny Wayne Shepherd. In addition, the producer/mixing team of Jerry Harrison and Tom Lord-Alge (who did both Live On and Trouble Is) has been replaced by Marti Frederiksen and Andy Wallace, who give the album a more muscular sound. This album is tailor-made for rock radio with its big guitar sounds and recycled classic rock riffs, and Shepherd sounds very comfortable in this setting. The lyrics are a bit weak in places, but most of the songs have solid hooks and fine guitar solos. There are some very nice touches throughout the album, like the backward guitar and restrained solo that appear on "Let Go" (which recalls some of Steve Winwood's work) or the gospel backing vocals and excellent outro of "Hey, What Do You Say." "Ain't Selling Out" is a bit of a misstep: a forceful chugging rocker over a monotonous hook, and the Kid Rock guest shot ("Spank") may sell an extra copy or two, but the song is pretty unremarkable. Overall, The Place You're In is a solid album that shows Shepherd continuing to grow as an artist, but whether he can develop a more personal voice remains to be seen.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/05/2004
Label:
Reprise / Wea
UPC:
0093624886624
catalogNumber:
48866
Rank:
36314

Tracks

  1. Alive
  2. Be Mine
  3. Spank
  4. Let Go
  5. Ain't Selling Out
  6. Believe
  7. The Place You're In
  8. Hey, What Do You Say
  9. Get It Together
  10. Burdens
  11. A Little Bit More

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Kenny Wayne Shepherd   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Vocals,Background Vocals
Kid Rock   Vocals,Background Vocals
Jim Cox   Piano,Hammond Organ,Clavinet,Hammond B3
Marti Frederiksen   Bass,Guitar,Percussion,Piano,Bass Guitar,Keyboards,Hammond Organ,Background Vocals,Hammond B3
Mikal Reid   Guitar
Stephanie Spunill   Background Vocals
Brian Tichy   Drums
Pat Hodges   Background Vocals
Noah Hunt   Vocals,Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Kid Rock   Composer
Kenny Wayne Shepherd   Composer
Marti Frederiksen   Composer,Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Bob Ludwig   Mastering
Mikal Reid   Composer
Noah Hunt   Composer
Jamie Houston   Composer
John O'Mahoney   Digital Editing
Brian Paturalski   Engineer

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