It has been five years since Ian Carr took time out from being a go-to session guitarist to release his first “solo” album, Who He?. Now he’s back with more of the same so if you liked that you’ll like I Like Your Taste In Music. The Various Artists are just that – a core quartet of Laura Wilkie on violin; Maria Jonsson on viola d’amore (a baroque instrument which seems to have had up to sixteen strings – Maria plays a more restrained nine); Thomas Gibbs on keyboards and Staffan Lindfors on bass and omnichord. Ian plays guitar and “things”. Not your average line-up. In addition there are special guests who appear on a single track: Steph Geremia, Gustaf Ljunggren and Simon Thoumire.
The record is mostly instrumental except when it isn’t – the lyric of ‘Oh Yeah!’ consists of two words, “Oh yeah!” – but it’s not as strange as that makes it sound. The opening track is ‘The Flow Country’, a composition by Jim Sutherland built on Gibbs’ piano before the strings take over. It has a slightly jazzy feel but won’t scare the horses. The title track, written by Carr, is also the first “song” and took me back to the time when, going to someone’s house for the first time, you’d make a beeline for their record collection as soon as you decently could. You can’t do that with an iPod and I love it for that.
Next is ‘Göken’, a traditional Swedish piece led by the strings, followed by Gibbs’ lovely and, ultimately, rather stirring ‘Sarah’s Waltz’. ‘On A Wet Day’ is almost a conventional song and that’s followed by the aforementioned ‘Oh Yeah!’ and a brief snippet of ‘The Cuckoo’. ‘Climber’ begins in a flourish of jazz-rock before the omnichord gets a solo and by now the tracks are beginning to flow together so the final twenty minutes feel like a single composition.
I was going to say that I Like Your Taste In Music is an album that requires a lot of thought but really that’s the last thing it needs. Just sit back and roll with it.
Artist’s website: www.iancarrguitar.com
‘I Like Your Taste In Music’ – official video: