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Ulf Wakenius: Enchanted Moments

Back in the ’80s, Steve Khan’s innovative album Local Color proved that the acoustic guitar could be paired with the synthesizer, both tonally and creatively. While Wakenius occasionally achieves some success along those same lines, too often he drifts aimlessly, becalmed in a placid sea despite his deep tone and ability to navigate changes.

“Cry Me A River” and “Old Folks” provide a bit of groove relief with their slow but distinct four-beat feels. And the medium-slow Latin rhythm of “I Wish I Knew” seems like a rhythm changes burner in contrast to the rest of the album’s tempos. But just when you think that things might really pick up, it’s back to the interminable plodding. Maybe this album might make soothing background music for the easily agitated, but you’d probably want to pass it by unless you’re really interested in hearing just how slow the guitar can really be played.

Originally Published