Q (1/92, p.76) - 4 Stars - Excellent - "...his mature work has always been superbly crafted, both witty and wise...a lively mix of soul and country rock..."
Stereo Review (1/92, p.71) - Best Recording of the Month - "...a well- balanced album...by focusing on a few social problems, Taylor seems to have stoked his creative fires..."
New York Times (Publisher) (9/11/92, p.C24) - "...Taylor's latest collection of sly, elliptical folk-pop songs finds him near the peak of his form..."
Personnel includes: James Taylor (vocals, acoustic guitar); Danny Kortchmar (acoustic guitar); Michael Landau (guitar); Jerry Douglas (dobro); Mark O'Connor (violin); Michael Brecker, Bob Mintzer (tenor saxophone); Randy Brecker (trumpet); Dave Bargeron (trombone); Don Grolnick (piano, organ, synthesizer); Clifford Carter (synthesizer, programming); Jimmy Johnson, Tony Levin (bass); Carlos Vega, Steve Jordan, Steve Gadd (drums); Don Alias (percussion).
Recorded at Skline and Power Station Studios, New York, New York and A&M and Studio F Studios, Los Angeles, California.
Following the brilliant NEVER DIE YOUNG, James Taylor offers the equally magnificent NEW MOON SHINE. Taylor's middle-aged wisdom is in full bloom with this beautifully crafted, yet often darker, set of songs. Produced again by Taylor's friend Don Grolnick, this album is less adventurous musically than past efforts, but the subject matter is far and away some of the most poignant and heartfelt of Taylor's career.
The opening "Copperline" is a tour of a fictional town, told with a longing for lost youth. "Shed A Little Light" is a masterpiece of lyrical spiritualism calling for a strengthening of brotherhood. "The Frozen Man" wistfully paints a dark picture of a lost fisherman brought back many years after his death to find an unfriendly world. On a reassuring note, "Oh Brother" wishes peace for a fellow man in trouble. Things aren't all gloomy, though, as the radiant "(I've Got To) Stop Thinkin' 'Bout That," "Slap Leather" and Sam Cooke's "Everybody Loves To Cha Cha Cha" surely prove. Taylor closes with one of his most touching performances on "The Water Is Wide."