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jem7vwh 07-05-2005 12:43 AM

Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
I did a quick search and didn't see much recent discussion about Eric's new album. I've been listening to it a bit lately and I feel two ways about it.

A. The songwriting: It's much better. There's not a track that I skip and several of them are legitimately interesting and catchy.


B. The guitar playing: It's not better. In fact it's worse. When I saw Eric live a few months ago, I told a friend that I thought he sounded much slower and sloppier than previously, and now I wonder if he is experiencing physical issues like arthritis. The playing seems much more conventional- lacking many of the wide intervalic cascading phrases he's known for. The dry production on his leads doesn't help.


All in all, I really like the new album as a composition, but I think it's a big dissapointment compared to Venus Isle for guitar playing.

elcid 07-05-2005 09:18 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
A friend of mine bought it and told he it was awful, I didn't believe him so he let me me borrow it.
At first I liked it until I really listened to it.
The song writing is TERRIBLE.
All the instrumentals are under 3 mins and don't go anywhere, and the vocal tracks are even worse. This album was definately not worth the 5 year wait.
Maybe he was too busy designing signature guitars, or looking for the right batteries or trying to not look like Ellen Degenerous to worry about writing better songs.

spencer096 07-05-2005 11:38 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
i heard it, borrowed a friend's copy. im not a big EJ fan though i used to love him but i just got tired of it all. great musicians evolve and change. EJ has released the same cd 3 times with a huge wait in between.

my opinion means nothing, i have no clout, i have no experience, i dont have a career in music to give me some respectibility. who am i to say what EJ should or should not do? but as a music nut, i would love to see EJ take his skills to another musical venue. hendrix made 4 albums in 4 years and was constantly evolving and changing. fire garden is completely different than passion and warfare. john coltrane had 7 totally unique musical periods in his incredily short yet totally prodigious 15 year career. not even mentioning miles davis or zappa or keith jarrett. EJ takes 5 years in between releasing albums, and they all sound, more or less, identical. id love to see him try and do a fusion album or maybe a funk thingee. something less clean, more groove, more feeling, something that challenges him and forces him to use his insane amount of talent. something that is obviously not perfect yet shows human character.

his live cd was cool, boderline great. it was great hearing him wail knowing that he didnt spend 6 weeks making sure the solo was as clean as possible. i dont find that enjoyable in music.

but then again, who am i to knock him?

jem7vwh 07-05-2005 12:00 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by elcid
....trying to not look like Ellen Degenerous....


LOL...I always thought I was the only one who saw the resemblance.

freedom's door 07-06-2005 11:46 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Yeah, this album was pretty disappointing for me. Only a couple of the songs really "grabbed" me, and i thought a few were awful especially the smooth jazz sounding one (track 9, i think).
The guitar playing had it's moments, as always, but as someone else said, there seems to be less of the effects and sounds, and more of just a straight guitar sound. To me that's a shame given some of the sounds EJ has at his disposal.
I'm going to see him this saturday at BB King's, hopefully there will be some fire to the live show; it seemed to really be lacking on this album.
peace

jem7vwh 07-07-2005 12:38 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by freedom's door
Yeah, this album was pretty disappointing for me. Only a couple of the songs really "grabbed" me, and i thought a few were awful especially the smooth jazz sounding one (track 9, i think).
The guitar playing had it's moments, as always, but as someone else said, there seems to be less of the effects and sounds, and more of just a straight guitar sound. To me that's a shame given some of the sounds EJ has at his disposal.
I'm going to see him this saturday at BB King's, hopefully there will be some fire to the live show; it seemed to really be lacking on this album.
peace

I've heard a lot of complaints about the production in general. Some think it's ruined by reverb and others (including me) think his guitar signal is way too hot and too dry. He's missing that smooth ringing tone he had on songs like "Lonely in the Night" and "Manhattan" and he's replaced it with a sort of dry Ted Nugent sound. Not good.

kp69 07-07-2005 02:32 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
I haven't heard the album yet.....

The tone your describing......Dry, 'Nugent' kinda sound.
His favorite overdriven sounds are Clapton, Cream era tones....I bet that's what he was going for.

jem7vwh 07-07-2005 03:03 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kp69
I haven't heard the album yet.....

The tone your describing......Dry, 'Nugent' kinda sound.
His favorite overdriven sounds are Clapton, Cream era tones....I bet that's what he was going for.

I could definately see that in the first few songs. On the second half of the disc he goes for some slow-jam weather channel jazz stuff.

bduersch 07-12-2005 01:45 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jem7vwh
On the second half of the disc he goes for some slow-jam weather channel jazz stuff.

Wow, can't wait to get the CD now. Weather Channel has been dishing up my favorite slow jams for years now. :)

--B

jem7vwh 07-15-2005 07:49 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by bduersch
Wow, can't wait to get the CD now. Weather Channel has been dishing up my favorite slow jams for years now. :)

--B

if you're a big fan of the weather channel- you'll love it. I never thought I'd witness as clear a textbook definition of "Filler" from Eric, but here it is. Musical wallpaper. Kinda sad.

hamand 07-16-2005 09:47 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
I just got this and I think it's fabulous. I agree that the playing in technical terms is certainly more restrained than Venus Isle, and how many times did I hear people say that it was overplayed and overproduced?! Of course, I loved that album.

If people enjoyed Live and Beyond, this is more of that musical direction with still yet a mellower feel. Some heartaching musicality here.

Flobanez 07-16-2005 11:29 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Im a huge EJ fan and I have to say that Venus Isle is a much more enjoyable listen by far.
Dont get me wrong, I LOVE Bloom. Venus Isle in my opinion, is the best album EJ has ever put out.
I love Alien Love Child too. Great album. I would love to see him play that set live.

I just saw EJ last weekend with Buddy Guy and sadly he only played SRV off Venus Isle. I was hoping for Pavilion and When the Sun Meets The Sky. Of course Manhattan and Camel's Night Out would've been cool too. :mrgreen:

Flobanez 07-16-2005 11:35 AM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jem7vwh
I've heard a lot of complaints about the production in general. Some think it's ruined by reverb and others (including me) think his guitar signal is way too hot and too dry. He's missing that smooth ringing tone he had on songs like "Lonely in the Night" and "Manhattan" and he's replaced it with a sort of dry Ted Nugent sound. Not good.

Agreed. I dont particularly care for his tone on Bloom.
I love the tone he has on Camel's night out and the whole Venus Isle album.
That nice overdrive 100 pound violin tone. ;)

hamand 07-16-2005 10:11 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
I would agree that the tones on this album are certainly different to the ones on his Ah Via Musicom, Tones and Venus Isle, he stuck with the same tone for much of the album and that smooth lead tone he is famous for seems to have largely vanished. Even on track 4, when it sort of makes an appearance, it's squashed.

I guess he wants to make his recorded tone similar as easy to dial up as his live tone. Maybe, I dunno. I just said it thinking I would get chicks. And yes, I mean baby chickens when I say that.

Tom Gilroy 07-17-2005 01:45 PM

Re: Eric Johnson - Bloom opinions?
 
I like it. The tone is a bit less ambient than Venus Isle and not as powerful as Ah Via Musicom, but its somewhat more jazzy with a slightly richer tone to my ears. It's different. Its not better or worse to me. Its more jazzy, more relaxed than before.

This is definitley a musical album, its not completely guitar based. Its soothing, like a James Taylor album. You all need to stop expecting more Ah Via or more Venus Isle. Those times are gone. They were what they were, and this is what it is. And I for one love it.


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