AL DI MEOLA — Scenario

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AL DI MEOLA - Scenario cover
2.57 | 4 ratings | 2 reviews
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Album · 1983

Filed under Fusion
By AL DI MEOLA

Tracklist

1. Mata Hari (6:07)
2. African Night (4:52)
3. Island Dreamer (4:07)
4. Scenario (4:00)
5. Sequencer (4:08)
6. Cachaca (5:36)
7. Hypnotic Conviction (3:52)
8. Calliope (4:20)
9. Scoundrel (3:46)

Total Time: 40:51

Line-up/Musicians

- Jan Hammer /Keyboards, Bass, Drums, Piano, Organ
- Al Di Meola /Guitar, Synthesizer, Tom Tom, Chordophone, Drums
- Phil Collins / Drums (3)
- Tony Levin /Electric Upright Bass (8)
- Bill Bruford / Electronic Drums [Simmons]

About this release

Columbia – CK 38944 (US)

Recorded at Caribou Ranch, Nederland, Colorado

Thanks to snobb for the updates

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AL DI MEOLA SCENARIO reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

Atavachron
This was an interesting phase for Mr. Di Meola. It was the 1980s after all, not an easy time for any musician who'd been around as long as he, and he found himself adapting to that brave new musical world the best way he could. The result was 'Scenario', and it turned out to be quite a tasty little album. The line up for the session was also an asset; Jan Hammer on keys, Fairlight CMI, piano, Linn and Roland drums, and Moog bass. As well, Bill Bruford and Tony Levin guest on a track, and Phil Collins appears. This didn't produce a prog supergroup for the 80s but it did make for one of the better synthetic projects of that often garish period.

The winds of the East and an Indian Bansuri, all electronic, open the desert pictures of 'Mata Hari', a track that showcases fluid rhythms from Hammer's Linn drums and Fairlight with Di Meola's cool plucking on top. The obligatory Adult Contemporary pap follows with 'African Night' and the record is further diminished by the dreadful 'Island Dreamer'. Luckily, these two maestros snap out of it and give us the superb title cut, a lovely and passioned duet of Al's Flamenco strings with Hammer's alternating piano and synth. A diamond in the rough and one of the things worth admission. 'Sequencer', in many ways the flagship of this project, is a bright electro-rocker where the blend of high-tech with hard rock is best illuminated and features one of this guitarist's best, most elegantly fierce staccato performances. 'Cachaca' slows the pace a bit but the guitar still cuts like a knife as it does in 'Hypnotic Conviction'. The eerie 'Calliope' develops into an odd-metered romp with melodic solos and the album finishes with the racing and clipping 'Scoundrel', an exercise in instrumental prowess. And please note the hats-off to Jeff Beck's 'Blue Wind' at the end, a well-deserved homage to that rock fusion giant.

Members reviews

Sean Trane
Don’t be fooled by the prestigious line-up announced on the inside sleeve, Bruford, Collins and Levin appear on only one track each, the rest being just the ADM and Jan Hammer duo sharing all the instrumentation. While not a bad album per se, Scenario is plagued by the usual stinking 80’s flaws that include weak/shitty synth sound (sorry Jan), bad synthetic beats and a general lack of good songwriting. Clearly ADM is now in the complete routine part of his career, recording one album after another, without actually really investing himself as much as a few years back. This album could easily match some of the weaker ECM releases of the era, but even then, this is not really bad, either.

The duo develops a highly synthesized music, ADM even using a Roland Guitar synth, and the music is often reminiscent of Jan Hammer’s hit soundtrack of that idiotic Miami Vice TV series (you know, the one where cops drives Ferraris and Garden Dwarf Collins will make a “memorable appearance”) and others softer jazz gizmos. The tracks where the three guests appears are not really much different than the rest of the album either. Although not a true stinker of an album, it is best avoided by everyone, especially Mr Bruford!

Ratings only

  • Steve Wyzard
  • Lynx33

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