John Lurie - African Swim and Manny & Lo

John Lurie - African Swim and Manny & Lo
Artist: John Lurie
Duration: 40:50
Release Date: February 16, 1999
Album: African Swim and Manny & Lo
Styles: Modern Creative, Avant-Garde Jazz
Recording Location: Avatar Studios, New York, NY; Big House Recording; Clinton Recording
Genre: Pop\Rock

Renaissance man John Lurie displays track after track of abstract jazz vibes on this exuberant album compiling two film soundtracks. The general atmosphere is one of gentle jazz inflections. There's a mysterious, Southern air to much of the guitar work. Most of the songs are quiet yet emotionally charged instrumentals. When Lurie and his collaborators (including Medeski, Martin & Wood and Marc Ribot) do supply vocals, they're quite humorous and effective. "Big Trouble" sees Lurie telling hilarious tales of the dilemmas of everyday desires, using the vocal stylings of a Southern bluesman. "She's Not a Nurse" is a joyous Ramones-style romp, with raging punk overtones. The only complaint against any of these songs, across both soundtracks, is that they're simply too short. Many songs just start to register their charms and then end under the one-minute mark. Thankfully, the rolling, cocktail interplay of "Manny & Lo (End Titles)" lasts six minutes. It's hard to imagine any of these 25 songs not working perfectly as the score to any film, since Lurie attempts and masters so many different musical styles. African Swim and Manny & Lo sees Lurie creating remarkably pleasurable, accomplished jazz soundscapes. Atmospheric and controlled, Lurie's music works as a darkly humorous, pretty ode to life's hardships and simple pleasures. It seems as if John Lurie can do no wrong.

Title/ComposerPerformerTime
Main Titles / John LurieJohn Lurie3:14
Al Al Al Al / John LurieJohn Lurie3:11
Big Trouble / John LurieJohn Lurie3:09
Men Working / John LurieJohn Lurie1:05
Teddy Bears Nik Pop / John LurieJohn Lurie1:13
Sex With Al / John LurieJohn Lurie1:01
Gun Dance / John LurieJohn Lurie1:05
Tomato Fight / John LurieJohn Lurie1:07
Al Is Hated / John LurieJohn Lurie0:54
Vibe Whoops / John LurieJohn Lurie1:24
Goodbye to Peach / John LurieJohn Lurie2:56
African Swim / John LurieJohn Lurie1:44
Manny and Lo / John LurieJohn Lurie1:59
Tiffany's Bedroom / John LurieJohn Lurie0:40
Driving into Country / John LurieJohn Lurie1:38
Manny With Lunchbox / John LurieJohn Lurie0:26
She's Not a Nurse / John LurieJohn Lurie0:50
Manny Leaves Lo / John LurieJohn Lurie0:48
Monster Trucks / John LurieJohn Lurie0:32
Lo Crawls Through Window / John LurieJohn Lurie0:58
Wild Bill / John LurieJohn Lurie0:40
Dream Elaine Driving / John LurieJohn Lurie0:41
Kidnapping Elaine / John LurieJohn Lurie2:34
Hypnotize the Lizard / John LurieJohn Lurie0:54
Manny and Lo / John LurieJohn Lurie6:07

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