Adrian Belew

Mr. Music Head

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On Mr. Music Head, guitar virtuoso Adrian Belew serves up a pure pop-sounding album, and does a satisfying job to boot. He puts his guitar to good use, at times sounding experimental, but only doing so to add color to his three-minute tunes. On "Oh Daddy," his daughter Audie shares the singing on this light, cheery little number. With "Bad Days," the piano is the main instrument, projecting Belew's emotions quite fittingly. Belew's fondness for animal rights is the main theme behind "Hot Zoo," and "Cruelty to Animals" is an assortment of animal noises heard amongst background instrumentation, reminding listeners that he hasn't abandoned his avant-garde style completely. While Belew's voice isn't really his largest asset, it's not unlistenable, and along with the multitude of instruments used on every track, each song carries its own persona. Past work with the Talking Heads can be heard from start to finish, showing up by way of certain staccato rhythms and well-constructed melodies. Hearing Adrian Belew in a pop sense is surprisingly enjoyable, even if he can't leave his experimental string bending behind entirely.

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