Leo Kottke

A Shout Toward Noon

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Though the opening cuts are typical Leo Kottke instrumentals -- bouncy guitar pieces with nods to jazz, folk, and blues -- A Shout Toward Noon is dominated by more moody, somber tunes. In some cases these are in bright folk territory -- "Four Four North" has the tense, repetitive activity of a Hitchcock soundtrack and features some unusual guitar techniques that magnify the sense suspense. Other cuts like "The Ice Field" have the meditative, melancholy character that is more typical of John Fahey's later work. This isn't to say that there are no bright moments, just that the musical dynamic of this entire album is wider than usual. A Shout Toward Noon is in fact one of Kottke's most intriguing albums, one which amply rewards repeated listening.

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