Joe Henry


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Henry has often made stylistic departures, so Fuse shouldn't be all that shocking. Yet, "Fat" sounds freaky till the beats soak in; the faux soul of "Want Too Much" is cloying. But ultimately, the new groove-a-delic Henry knows how to work the sound as he mixes and matches old and new, as on the Dylan-y bits with a "millennial" backing track (Daniel Lanois and T-Bone Burnett step in to mix); the subtle, catchy chorus in the opener "Monkey"; the laid-back and fuzzy "Angels"; and the fantastically evocative and poetic mysticism in the title song. There's upbeat melodicism in (I love you with my) "Skin and Teeth." But why that George Benson-like guitar solo during "Curt Flood"?

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