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  • Tuesday, June 24, 2008
    AP: Ry Cooder's New Album an "Unqualified Success"
    Susan Titelman

    Ry Cooder's new album, I, Flathead, releases today and follows Chavez Ravine (2005) and My Name Is Buddy (2007) as the third and final album in Cooder's California trilogy. Two versions of the new record are available: the standard CD as well as a deluxe package with both the CD and the accompanying 95-page novella that Ry wrote in conjunction with the album songs, told from the perspective of the fictitious musician Kash Buk and featuring an oddball cast of characters and car obsessives from California's drag-racing salt flats in the 1960s. Ry will be on today's edition of Soundcheck on WNYC, New York public radio, to discuss his latest release with the show's host, John Schaefer. Listen live today at 2 PM ET on wnyc.org.

    Associated Press writer Scott Bauer finds I, Flathead to be a fitting finish to Cooder's "intriguing" trilogy, calling it "another record that stands out for its lyricism and sounds a lot like a book set to music. Which, in this case, it is." Bauer concludes: "I, Flathead gives listeners (and readers) plenty to consider. And in that regard, it's an unqualified success." You can read the AP review in the San Francisco Chronicle at sfgate.com.

    ---

    The Independent (UK)'s Nick Coleman calls the new album "immaculately played and produced high-resolution Americana ... This is Cooder doing what he does best, which is to summon a lost America from his fibres and set it to the music he hears in other people's heads."

    ---

    BBC's Chris Jones says the new album sees Ry "combine the best of all his areas of expertise. It's for sure that whether you're a fan of his Americana, his guitar playing or just his fine writing that you'll be satisfied with I, Flathead."

    "Cooder blends his love of country, blues, rock 'n' roll, and even mariachi," Jones continues, "weaving it in with the usual blend of sociopolitical history and a BIG dollop of humour." The reviewer points to two tracks on the album as welcome nods to earlier highlights from Cooder's career, writing: "Cooder's willingness to bring guitars back into centre stage means 'Steel Guitar Heaven' is a total, jazzy blast while 'Spayed Cooley' combines country swing with canine-related jokes."

    Jones finds further references to the past on this "most typically 'Cooderish' album in a long while" in the track "Ridin' with the Blues," which, "with its references to his glory days on the road with the Stones may be the loudest, raunchiest thing he's done in a long while."

    I, Flathead, Jones concludes, "is a fine end piece" to Cooder's California trilogy. To read the review, visit bbc.co.uk.

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AP: Ry Cooder's New Album an "Unqualified Success"

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on June 24, 2008 - 9:34am
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Tuesday, June 24, 2008 - 17:25
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Ry Cooder's new album, I, Flathead, releases today and follows Chavez Ravine (2005) and My Name Is Buddy (2007) as the third and final album in Cooder's California trilogy. Two versions of the new record are available: the standard CD as well as a deluxe package with both the CD and the accompanying 95-page novella that Ry wrote in conjunction with the album songs, told from the perspective of the fictitious musician Kash Buk and featuring an oddball cast of characters and car obsessives from California's drag-racing salt flats in the 1960s.

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Ry Cooder's new album, I, Flathead, releases today and follows Chavez Ravine (2005) and My Name Is Buddy (2007) as the third and final album in Cooder's California trilogy. Two versions of the new record are available: the standard CD as well as a deluxe package with both the CD and the accompanying 95-page novella that Ry wrote in conjunction with the album songs, told from the perspective of the fictitious musician Kash Buk and featuring an oddball cast of characters and car obsessives from California's drag-racing salt flats in the 1960s. Ry will be on today's edition of Soundcheck on WNYC, New York public radio, to discuss his latest release with the show's host, John Schaefer. Listen live today at 2 PM ET on wnyc.org.

Associated Press writer Scott Bauer finds I, Flathead to be a fitting finish to Cooder's "intriguing" trilogy, calling it "another record that stands out for its lyricism and sounds a lot like a book set to music. Which, in this case, it is." Bauer concludes: "I, Flathead gives listeners (and readers) plenty to consider. And in that regard, it's an unqualified success." You can read the AP review in the San Francisco Chronicle at sfgate.com.

---

The Independent (UK)'s Nick Coleman calls the new album "immaculately played and produced high-resolution Americana ... This is Cooder doing what he does best, which is to summon a lost America from his fibres and set it to the music he hears in other people's heads."

---

BBC's Chris Jones says the new album sees Ry "combine the best of all his areas of expertise. It's for sure that whether you're a fan of his Americana, his guitar playing or just his fine writing that you'll be satisfied with I, Flathead."

"Cooder blends his love of country, blues, rock 'n' roll, and even mariachi," Jones continues, "weaving it in with the usual blend of sociopolitical history and a BIG dollop of humour." The reviewer points to two tracks on the album as welcome nods to earlier highlights from Cooder's career, writing: "Cooder's willingness to bring guitars back into centre stage means 'Steel Guitar Heaven' is a total, jazzy blast while 'Spayed Cooley' combines country swing with canine-related jokes."

Jones finds further references to the past on this "most typically 'Cooderish' album in a long while" in the track "Ridin' with the Blues," which, "with its references to his glory days on the road with the Stones may be the loudest, raunchiest thing he's done in a long while."

I, Flathead, Jones concludes, "is a fine end piece" to Cooder's California trilogy. To read the review, visit bbc.co.uk.

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