The Rippingtons Built To Last
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- Released: August 28, 2012
- Label: Ent. One Music
- 1.Built To Last
- 2.American Panorama
- 3.Fools Gold
- 4.Hotel Deville
- 5.Cougars and Gigolos
- 6.Route 66
- 7.In The Shadow Of Giants
- 8.Black Oak
- 9.We Made a New World
- 10.Monument / Monolith
- 12.Built To Last [Classical Guitar Reprise]
- 13.Fools Gold [Orchestral]
- 14.Black Oak [Orchestral]
- 15.Hotel Deville [Orchestral]
- 16.Built To Last [Orchestral]
Audio Mixer: Russ Freeman .
Liner Note Author: Russ Freeman .
Recording information: Surfboard Studios, Marina Del Rey, CA.
As the driving force behind the Rippingtons' diverse but instantly recognizable contemporary jazz sound since the mid-'80s, founder, composer, and guitarist Russ Freeman has always drawn from his technical expertise and passion for new hardware and software to fashion rich musical landscapes. On Built to Last, Freeman harkens back to his early film scoring studies to add a powerful orchestral grandeur to the mix. Pushing the envelope like never before, he keeps his trademark melodies at the forefront but draws on the strings to expand the band's core sound to include everything from pop and symphonic rock to classical chamber music, country (he spent much of his adolescence and teen years in Nashville), chill/ambient, electric jazz fusion, and -- in an electrifying move -- even heavy metal, enhancing his own powerful guitar energy with a scorching solo by Zakk Wylde. He complements the 11 main tracks with a simple and beautiful, classical guitar/orchestra-driven reprise of the title track and orchestral takes on four of the collection's most memorable pieces: the electronica-meets-jazz/rock-fusion explosion "Fool's Gold," the whimsical and soaring, acoustic guitar-centered "Black Oak," a balmy, easy grooving and twangy "Hotel Deville," and the hard-rocking title track, which features Freeman on the Ibanez 335, a guitar he hasn't recorded with in over 20 years! While the material at the core of these songs is catchy and simple as per the Ripps' pop/jazz roots, the dynamic and dramatic highs and lows (with often quick and unexpected shifts in gear), stylistic free-for-all approach, and string textures add up to make Built to Last a bold, boundary-stretching start to the Rippingtons' next quarter-century. ~ Jonathan Widran
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