Daniel Lanois

Cool Water

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For someone that has produced some of the biggest and most charismatic artists in the world, the musical output of Daniel Lanois is decidedly less immediate. Both on his studio releases and on Cool Water, a live album from Canadian performances in 1993. There's little to differentiate this album from the studio albums from which most of the material was culled. His rough-hewn, grunge-like guitar playing is compelling and melodic. It compares quite favorably to Neil Young, particularly on the glorious, feedback-laced instrumental "Irish Melody." There's also a lovely reading of "The Maker" paired with "River Rise" from his first album Acadie. Cool Water is enjoyable but probably unnecessary for all but the most ardent fans. Listeners interested in Lanois' work would be advised to seek out the studio releases.