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johhn frusciante - THE EMPYREAN
Old 27th January 2009
  #1
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
johhn frusciante - THE EMPYREAN

So I'm a huge fan of Frusciante's solo stuff, and I've been listening to this
since it came out on the 20th of this month. It's hard to describe how wonderful this record is without getting too teared up. I can't think of any musician (particularly guitar players) that have as much Elton JOhn in the system as they do Jimi Hendrex.
John's voice has really gotten good at projecting the feeling he is trying to capture, and the recordings are really nice sounding.

Any other Frusciante fans out there listening to this record?
I think I have all of his stuff, this and SHADOWS Collide being my two favorites (with the exception of his first one, which in my book is some of
the most strangely beautiful music I've ever heard).

Lots of inspiration from John music, hope he keeps makeing records forever!
Steelyfan.
Old 27th January 2009
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
FLUKE's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Big fan here too.
Just heard it for the first time!
It's a good one, definitely!! Beautiful melodies and original fx/reverbs.
Have to go and by a copy soon...

Cheers,

F.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
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gainreduction's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Is Ryan Hewitt involved this time too ?
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Not sure who worked on it, sounds really good though.
It's a masterpiece all the way around,
engineering, music, mastering, over all feeling of the record , wonderful songs.
It is a warm sounding record, 5 stars for Frusciante!!
The guys an analogue nut, probably 2" tape.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
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Waltz Mastering's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
I have his older stuff. Like to check out the new one though.

TW
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Another thing is that Johnny Marr plays on it....somewhere, I don't really hear him, or feel his playing, and i don't have the cd cover with me (at work). Wonder what he brought to the recordings?
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
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rectifier's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I will definitely check it out, very talented guy.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Nut
 
WestBerliner's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
this is a wonderful album! and i love the production on it. and....its not smashed!!
you actually have to turn it up to hear it. heh
I love his playing on this album (he doesn't play as much guitar as the guitarist in me wanted to hear but I'm happy)

Frusciante made me the guitarist I am today, and I love his songs. he definitely has a knack for writing songs with melodies that stick in your head.

Favorites so far: Before The Beginning, Song to the Siren, Unreachable, God, Heaven (love the ending!),Enough of Me (very cool Led Zep vibe here), and Central...

haha I listed over half the album didn't I..
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #9
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bcgood's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by WestBerliner ➑️
this is a wonderful album! and i love the production on it. and....its not smashed!!
That is good to hear.

I bought Shadows after reading an extensive article in Tape Op about the making of the album. Unfortunately I find the album kind of hard to listen to because it has been so over compressed.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
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headwerkn's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
I've just finished my first listen through and yes, it is JF at his best again. John's solo work is becoming a huge influence on my own work, not just musically but also in his approach to recording and production.

The Tape Op article from Shadows Collide With People (an incredible album, despite the compression) can be found here -> http://www.invisible-movement.net/20...s-been-scanned

I especially like the opening paragraph:

"The first thing you notice upon entering John Frusciante's Laurel Canyon home is the two Studer A-800 two-inch machines that nearly block the front door and hallway, leaving just enough room to get by them and into the house. In the tradition of great music being made in this canyon, John has made a commitment to home recording - analog recording to be more precise - that far exceeds most musicians' recording setups. One bedroom is filled with a vintage API console, a huge Doepfer modular analog synth, and an effects rack with a Fairchild 670, Pultecs, 1176s and vintage Neve and UA modules. Elsewhere there's both an EMT plate and an EMT digital reverb. The dining room has a grand piano and several organs and keyboards. The living room is filled with guitars, along with a Mellotron and an ARP 2500. The walls are lined with vinyl and some really cool rock posters and photos. This is a house dedicated to making music."

Sounds like my kind of house...
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #11
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gainreduction's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
There was a very nice article about John Frusciante and his approach to recording in the EU edition of TapeOp something like a year ago.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
I'm a big Frusciante fan and this album is very good.

But there's one thing that's pissing me of, it has so much dynamic range that i can't hear the songs on the iPod.

It's like trying to hear Bartok's stuff in the iPod in the middle of the street.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
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headwerkn's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
You're playing it wrong.

From johnfrusciante.com:

"It should be played as loud as possible and it is suited to dark living rooms late at night."

Failing that, you could follow in the great GS tradition of posting a thread regarding which is the best compressor to strap across the 2-bus...
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Lives for gear
 
esaias's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Uh oh, I'm off to record store right after I get off from work.

yeah, I'm a big fan, Frusciante keeps up my faith in guitar rock

-Tomi
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #15
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Listened to it on the way to work this morning....badass music.
The record has great fidelity, in the sense that it's not recorded too hot,
and it's not so mid-rangy how it's mixed, so when you turn it up, it just sounds louder and lush (yes, really cozy) , without the harshness. Perfect really. This is quickly becoming my favorite.

I've been listening to John's music from the start, (bought na'des and usually just a t-shirt on CASSETTE). It seems no matter what kind of music I'm makin, his influence is always in there somewhere, just can't shake that guitar sound man, the stuff where he plays like 3 or 4 different leads at a time to make a melody within a rythym is so nice.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by headwerkn ➑️
You're playing it wrong.

From johnfrusciante.com:

"It should be played as loud as possible and it is suited to dark living rooms late at night."

Failing that, you could follow in the great GS tradition of posting a thread regarding which is the best compressor to strap across the 2-bus...
Lol it does sound really nice in my room and studio. I was just saying that this kind of record isn't suitable for listening in the car or in the iPod. Just like my classical records.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #17
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bcgood's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Contrary to some newbies popular belief non smashed music actually sounds better on iPods and in cars. The only time you may need to change volume levels is if you are going between Britney Spears and a well mastered, non-smashed album on shuffle or something stupid like that. Otherwise, turn it up.
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #18
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dannygold's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelyfan ➑️
Another thing is that Johnny Marr plays on it....somewhere, I don't really hear him, or feel his playing, and i don't have the cd cover with me (at work). Wonder what he brought to the recordings?
Ah, that's the problem with Johnny Marr guest appearances. He often lays back. I guess I understand why... the guy respects the song. Still, it wouldn't kill him to do his thing!
Old 29th January 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcgood ➑️
Contrary to some newbies popular belief non smashed music actually sounds better on iPods and in cars. The only time you may need to change volume levels is if you are going between Britney Spears and a well mastered, non-smashed album on shuffle or something stupid like that. Otherwise, turn it up.
You of course haven't experienced listening classical music in your iPod or car.

If you tried so, you would know how difficult it is to listen to everything with such noisy backgrounds!

It has nothing to do with how loud it is playing. It's not a problem of turning it up or down! It's just because music has dynamics and you only hear everything in a controlled enviroment.
Old 30th January 2009
  #20
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I never noticed SHADOWS being that compressed. I'll have to pull it out and have a listen. I remeber it it had some wicked tracks on it though, especially track 2, the vocal melodies are just creative. John knows how to write for electronic beats too, i think it's great that nothing is out of the question as for as ideas about what to use for song creation.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #21
80425
Guest
Huge Frusciante fan here. I'm really into the Niandra Lades and usually just a t-shirt- a hard thing to digest for some audio buff's -but raw and purposeful indeed.

Planning on giving the new album the first full listen through tonight. I'm really stoaked about the quality of the whole project round and round, did anyone answer if Ryan Hewitt was involved in this as well?

heh
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #22
Gear Head
 
Skylar20's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
John Frusciante is incredible. If anyone has not heard his album Curtains, please do yourself a favor and check it out.

New album is great for sure!
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #23
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headwerkn's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelyfan ➑️
I never noticed SHADOWS being that compressed.
Nor I - I just thought it had an interesting midrange grittiness about it. You can here a bit of limiting on heavily orchestrated songs like "Carvel" and "Regret" but it is still a far cry from most of the stuff being released these days. Earlier this morning in the gym I had to skip over all the songs from The Darkness' "One Way Ticket..." because everything just craps out and distorts.

How many JF fans here have heard 'Smile From The Streets You Hold'?
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #24
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steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by headwerkn ➑️
Nor I - I just thought it had an interesting midrange grittiness about it. You can here a bit of limiting on heavily orchestrated songs like "Carvel" and "Regret" but it is still a far cry from most of the stuff being released these days. Earlier this morning in the gym I had to skip over all the songs from The Darkness' "One Way Ticket..." because everything just craps out and distorts.

How many JF fans here have heard 'Smile From The Streets You Hold'?
I bought it the day it came out, I listened to it alot at first and there are some beautiful songs and sounds on it. But overall, it was a mess, and John was a mess, original pressing is supposed to be some type of collectors
item now because I think they're supposed to remaster and mix it, but I don't think that would really make it "better". I read he made it just for drug money, and it sounds like it, although the music is 100% real, it's my least favorite. They are some great moments on that albulm, and some VERY scary ones.

Curtains is awesome too. I've been on a Frusciante kick here lately, he's mis-understood in my circle of music collectors, a real genius, someone who doesn't ask for approval from his peers or fans, what he feels is what you get, and that's the MOST you could ask for in music.

On the gearslutz tip, for some reason when i listen to his music, production is rarely given a thought until i colLect myself, the music
just shines beyond anything else, after that I can hear what they
achieved in the studio as far a production goes, but rarely gets that much thought on that end, for me, it transcends the techniquel side of it, but his records always sound good to my ears.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Lives for gear
 
roger's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
the best thing he has ever done is blood sugar sex magic....everything else has been pretty average in my book......blood sugar sex magic however is a towering stone cold classic. . . these solo records are strange....beautiful? .....occasionally but oh so briefly....i will give this new one a go tho based on your hot tip.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by roger ➑️
the best thing he has ever done is blood sugar sex magic....everything else has been pretty average in my book.......
Umm, I have to agree. I miss their original guitar player, Hillel Slovak.

Frusciante is good and all, and I like his playing, but he gets sooo much fanboy-style praise.

Have any of the kids these days heard of P-Funk? Or James Brown, or jeez, you know what I mean.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
steelyfan's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by roger ➑️
the best thing he has ever done is blood sugar sex magic....everything else has been pretty average in my book......blood sugar sex magic however is a towering stone cold classic. . . these solo records are strange....beautiful? .....occasionally but oh so briefly....i will give this new one a go tho based on your hot tip.
Well.... BSSM is a Rock/pop/funk record..and a good one , really cool guitar parts for those songs, but John's solo stuff is a different species
altogether.
If you find his other stuff average, I don't think you will be that impressed with his new albulm. His music has always been, I believe , very personal in introverted, more candlelite w/ wavery shadows than super stadium rock out. I have all the peppers albulms and they've always been one of my favorite bands, but Frusciante's music strikes a chord with me that the Peppers never have.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #28
Lives for gear
 
headwerkn's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by steelyfan ➑️
I bought it the day it came out, I listened to it alot at first and there are some beautiful songs and sounds on it. But overall, it was a mess, and John was a mess, original pressing is supposed to be some type of collectors
item now because I think they're supposed to remaster and mix it, but I don't think that would really make it "better". I read he made it just for drug money, and it sounds like it, although the music is 100% real, it's my least favorite. They are some great moments on that albulm, and some VERY scary ones.
I hope John revisits some of the songs from Smile... I'd always believed that great music can overcome any production deficiency, but after hearing Smile... I changed my mind. There are some true nuggets in the album, and while one shouldn't dismiss the relevance of Frusciante's mental and physical state while recording it, it would be nice if one day some of the songs were revisited and rerecorded in a more 'intelligible' manner.

Back to The Empryrean... is anyone else completed addicted to the outro of 'Unreachable'? Would have to be one of the nicest melodic guitar sequences ever recorded, not to mention the tasteful use of heavy effects.

I really keen to experiment with effecting guitar parts through a modular synth, as per John's methods, and am wondering the best way to start. I know JF uses a lot of MoogerFooger pedals live which is obviously an easy way to go, but their units are both quite pricey and I'd also be keen on controlling the effects via pitch MIDI input... I believe I could achieve this via the Control Processor and a MIDI-to-CV converter, but I'm thinking something like a Nord Modular (in particular the MicroModular which can be had for a few hundred US$ on eBay) would be more ideal.

My other idea was to build enough modules from a kit, etc. if anyone knows of a good one available?

Cheers, Ben.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #29
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Alex Specht's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by roger ➑️
blood sugar sex magic however is a towering stone cold classic. . . these solo records are strange....beautiful? .....occasionally but oh so briefly....i will give this new one a go tho based on your hot tip.
+1 and the chilli peppers only good album, coutesy of Rick Ruben
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
This just made my day! I had no idea that Frusciante had a new album out. I'll have to pick it up today.
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