Ron Wood

Not for Beginners

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On his first solo album in nearly a decade, Ron Wood recruits some of his friends, acquaintances, and former co-workers for a throwaway disc of studio rave-ups and questionably chosen covers. Ian McLagan, Andy Newmark, Scotty Moore, DJ Fontana, and most notably, Bob Dylan lend rhythm, voices, and more to Wood's own instrumental leads and scratchy vocals. Unfortunately, the lineup is just about the only thing that's surprising or even good about the album. Whether stumbling through the Byrds' "Rock n' Roll Star" or tripping over Holland-Dozier-Holland's "Leaving Here," Wood is an awkward frontman and bandleader. Only when his guitar does the talking for him -- like on "Wayside" or Dylan's "King of Kings" -- does Not for Beginners actually sound like a record made by a guy who makes tons of money playing in one of the world's most legendary bands.

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