Thursday, September 8, 2011

Retro - Shadows Collide with People by John Frusciante (Febuary 24th 2004)

So this is "Shadows Collide with People" by John Frusciante, his fourth solo studio album. Frusciante was also apart of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and recorded this album the same time "By The Way" was being recorded.

The album kicks off with "Carvel", which starts off with a bubbling distorted sound, before turning it over into the main meat of the song. It launches into a vocal hook that's just a sung note, and guitar chord progression. It's interesting lyrically, as it feels very raw, and the lyrics are about change after losing someone, which could be talking about his own battles with drugs, especially lines like "heaven receives you and throws you back". The song turns over on itself around the 3:50 mark, where goes into a steady riff, and an highly interesting call and response with "Have you gone, have gone, have you gone already/come back, come back, come back, come back". Aside from the intro to the song, it's fantastic, just enough of everything.

"Omission" follows up next. It starts off with a clean acoustic guitar part, then it goes into a layered part, with "Omit myself" and "Take myself from your eyes". It's hypnotic, and then it breaks into a light chorus and back into this. Then it picks up for a bit in a chorus, which is catchy, then goes back, but the bridge back into uses a choir like sound which works well to bridge the change in tempo. It flips back into the upbeat chorus to end it out, and it goes really raw and grating vocally, which works and doesn't work at the same time. It's a good song overall, very interesting in all the parts, though the pseudo dying ending could've been left out.

"Second Walk" is a upbeat catchy short song. Clocking in at under 2 minutes, it still has full verses, and plenty of guitar solos. It's catchy, it's simple, the guitar solos work really well. In a similar vein, "This Cold" runs nearly the same, though with more grit in the guitar, and less soloing, and a bit darker on the theme. "This Cold" clocks in at 2 minutes flat.

"Shadows Collide With People" is an ambitious album with 18 tracks (Japanese version has 19), which is full of pop influenced songs, but littered with experimental songs. It shows you the versatility and creative juice that flows out of Frusciante, and while a lot of it isn't for a lot of people, there is something for everyone. It's a great listen at least once through, for those who aren't akin to listening to ambient experimental tracks, but still love the passion the Frusciante delivers.

Notable Tracks: Carvel, Second Walk, This Cold, Song to Sing When I'm Lonely, Time Goes Back

100 character review or less: Shadows Collide with People is an excellent showcase of what John Frusciante's creativity brings

John Frusciante Official Site