Guitarist Mike Keneally made his name as Frank Zappa’s last guitarist, replacing Steve Vai (no less) for FZ’s final 1988 tour. And, since 1992, Keneally has released many an album that shares his love for his master’s voice. But you wouldn’t know any of that by listening to Keneally’s 9th solo LP, Wooden Smoke. Largely acoustic, yet retaining plenty of Keneally’s innate musical playfulness, Wooden Smoke is unique to MK’s catalog for its quiet sophistication and appreciative nod to The Beach Boys – more specifically… Carl Wilson. It takes an inner ear to appreciate the nuance that Carl brought to the Beach Boys (most notably during brother Brian’s late 60s/early 70s withdrawal) and Keneally savours those moments in “2001,” which is ripe with echoes of Carl’s Beach Boys staples, “Trader” and “Long Promised Road.” Along with that, Wooden Smoke offers up the delicate soft white underbelly to Keneally’s frantically diverse catalog. Worth getting at Amazon.
Dee ‘n’ A
Big thanks to our pal, Yotte, for offering this limited edition companion disc to Wooden Smoke, entitled Wooden Smoke Asleep - featuring alternate versions and altogether different instrumental asides that quietly compliment the (already wonderful) original. I’ve only begun listening to this for the first time this morning and am already smitten. Hear the companion to “2001,” “Boom 2001,” below. 10 years later, this limited bonus disc seems to only be available in MP3 form at Amazon.
David Lynch’s Curtains (2:29)
Me, Innate (3:47)
4 Legs (2:28)
The Canyon (1:18)
Kane St. (2:40)
Boom 2001 (1:58)
Haunted Wind (1:23)
The Velvet of Knowing (4:28)
The Haunted Wind of Commanche (0:50)
David Lynch’s Curtains – Sleepwalk With Me (1:49)
Nanny-Ass Coda (1:49)
And, So (1:29)
Mumbledy Bag (1:48)
Piano Reductions Vol. 1 (2004)
The Music Of Steve Vai (Listen to “Pig“). At Amazon (HERE).
Dancing + Dancing With Myself (2000)
2CD Version w/Bonus Solo Live Disc (Listen to “Live In Japan“). At Amazon (HERE).