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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Robert Fripp At The End Of Time

Painting With Sound

At The End Of Time
Churchscapes – Live in England & Estonia, 2006
Robert Fripp

Recorded during a self-financed tour of churches and cathedrals in England and then Estonia, Robert Fripp continues to ask all the right questions about how a musician can connect with music itself. A labour of love, this is his most cohesive solo release since 1995’s A Blessing Of Tears, music that was born from the grieving following the loss of his mother.

Gleaned from a collection of improvisations and then carefully edited together, the result is an album that contains nothing in the way of guitar heroics, dazzling fretwork, or fancy grandstanding. Instead, working slowly and methodically, following the paths suggested from the music itself, Fripp constructs a glacial reverie that has more in common with the likes of Gorecki or Estonia’s premier composer, Arvo Part.

His sounds often bring to mind the meditative paintings of Mark Rothko, who once said about his work “The only thing I care about is the expression of man's basic emotions: tragedy, ecstasy, destiny." Upon vast canvases composed from solemn strings, Fripp adds shining lines of aching harmony and small strokes of melody filled with the kind depth that can only comes from nearly 50 years of dedicated service to an instrument. The result is probably a career-best album. Essential Fripp.

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