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Brian Wilson (Pop): Imagination

Album Reviews:

Entertainment Weekly (6/19/98, p.74) - "...Wilson, the vocally rejuvenated Beach Boy auteur, trades in whimsy for effervescence here and the sunlit results are gladdening." - Rating: B

Q (4/00, p.117) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...relies to some extent on the fact that you know who Brian Wilson is....IMAGINATION is his most consistent effort since [1965's PET SOUNDS]."

Album Notes

Personnel: Brian Wilson (vocals, piano, Hammond B-3 organ, keyboards); Brent Rowan (acoustic, nylon string & electric guitars, sitar, mandolin); Jim Peterik, Greg Leisz, Tom Chaffee (acoustic & electric guitars); Scott Bennett (guitar); Larry Franklin (violin, viola); Paul Mertens (flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto & baritone saxophones); Richie Cannata (saxophone); Chuck Soumar (trumpet, piccolo trumpet); John Larson (trumpet); Jason Trtan (French horn, bass); Joe Thomas (accordion, piano, Hammond B-3 organ, keyboards, vibraphone, tympani, keyboard programming); Bob Lizik, Michael Rhodes (bass); Eddie Bayers, Tom Suchermann (drums); Jackie Bertone (percussion); Jimmy Buffett (background vocals).

Contains interviews with Jimmy Buffett, Eric Clapton, Stevie Wonder, Elvis Costello, Glen Campbell, Peter Buck, Sean Lennon, Barenaked ladies, Paul Shaffer, Diane Warren, and Melinda Wilson as well as concert footage.

Personnel includes: Brian Wilson; Timothy B. Schmit, Christopher Cross, Bruce Johnston, Joe Thomas, Jim Peterik.

This is a DTS CD, which features DTS 5.1 Surround Sound technology and is playable on a DTS-capable 5.1 Surround Sound system.

Personnel: Brian Wilson (vocals, piano, Hammond B-3 organ, keyboards); Brent Rowan (acoustic, nylon string & electric guitars, sitar, mandolin); Jim Peterik, Greg Leisz, Tom Chaffee (acoustic & electric guitars); Scott Bennett (guitar); Larry Franklin (violin, viola); Paul Mertens (flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto & baritone saxophones); Richie Cannata (saxophone); Chuck Soumar (trumpet, piccolo trumpet); John Larson (trumpet); Jason Trtan (French horn, bass); Joe Thomas (accordion, piano, Hammond B-3 organ, keyboards, vibraphone, tympani, keyboard programming); Bob Lizik, Michael Rhodes (bass); Eddie Bayers, Tom Suchermann (drums); Jackie Bertone (percussion); Jimmy Buffett (background vocals).

IMAGINATION includes a remake of the Beach Boys' "Let Him Run Wild" and a Jimmy Buffett collaboration, "South American," that gives "Kokomo" a run for its money. It's only the second album of new material Wilson has made in the 25 or so years he's spent lolling around his swimming pool, and it's a damn shame because at its best, which those two songs aren't, it flirts with perfection.

Beyond the three- and four-part harmonies (handled mostly by Wilson himself) and the dense beds of saxes, trumpets, clarinets and percussion--all of which Wilson fans have long been able to count on--are those classic Wilson melodies. He thrives on little complexities, like the strange modulations in the doo-woppy "Keep An Eye On Summer" and the extra chords in "Lay Down Burden" over which he stretches a stock pop melody. And he can still turn out a deceptively simple pop hook, as on "Your Imagination," and surprise you with his voice, like when he reaches for the lower depths of his range on "Cry."



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