The Mistakes — The Mistakes
(Immune IMM-1009, 1995, CD)
by Rob Walker, Published 1996-08-01
A collaboration between four diverse and experienced musicians, The Mistakes turns in as fun and challenging a listen as its lineup promises it to be. Virtuoso guitarists Mike Keneally and Henry Kaiser team up with Dixie Dregs bassist Andy West and Tubes and Todd Rundgren drummer Prairie Prince to maneuver through some of the most complex, eccentric, and good-humored music you'll hear this year. Equal time is given to both dizzying free improvisation and to wickedly tight, intricate pop-styled tunes. The overall effect is similar to Keneally's solo albums, but with a more talented and diverse lineup. Yet this is far from a Keneally-dominated venture. Henry Kaiser's experimentalism on the guitar is on full display, and there are many sounds here which you've likely never heard a guitar make before. Kaiser's and Keneally's styles complement each other nicely, and they each leave plenty of room for the other to explore. All four musicians deliver jaw-dropping performances, as the music cavorts between dense, serious instrumentals and quirky, humorous songs sung by Keneally. Longer tunes are interspersed with short eclectic musical vignettes accompanying spoken absurdist haikus written by each band member. There is an unmistakable air of good-natured fun that pervades this album; one can tell they thoroughly enjoyed recording these songs, and the excitement definitely carries through the CD to the listener. An excellent and highly recommended release.
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