Thurston Moore

Root

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AllMusic Review by

It's a premise that must have seemed quite promising at the time: Lo Recordings mailed 100 Thurston Moore guitar warblings to a myriad of artists. The artists were asked to create new works using Moore's original music as a starting point. While the list of artists who accepted the challenge is impressive, including Mogwai, Luke Vibert, Blur, Stereolab, Add N to X, Springheel Jack, and Bruce Gilbert, among others, the end result isn't cohesive as a slab of experimental music. Too many of the "additional producers" reach for all-out noise in the name of "art." It's not the big names who turn in the standout tracks. Springheel Jack's song is vexing and beautiful, sounding like a continuation of the ambient style Disco Inferno once traversed. The Mellowtrons create a fierce driving beat punctuated by Moore's squelching guitar. Echo Park masters the trippy electronic style of Luke Vibert, who falls a bit flat in his own lo-fi contribution. Without placing blame, there are a number of contributors whose uninspired work didn't deserve to make the cut. Striving for experimentation and artistic credibility, many of the contributors to Root dug themselves into holes of musical meaninglessness, to the point where the only salvation is the "skip" button on one's remote control. Root would have worked better as an EP than a nearly 80-minute album. It's impenetrable, not because of any inherent artistic sensibility, but because three-fourths of the contributions sound as if they were thrown together in mere minutes.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
feat: Derek Bailey
1:07
2
feat: Alec Empire
4:58
3
feat: Mogwai
1:12
4
feat: Luke Vibert
4:50
5 1:38
6
feat: Blur
5:54
7
feat: Mark Webber
2:28
8
feat: Stereolab
3:42
9
feat: Cheap Glue
2:11
10
feat: Add N to (X)
2:55
11 5:16
12 0:37
13 2:01
14 4:01
15
feat: V/Vm
2:34
16 4:09
17 1:57
18
feat: Echo Park
3:33
19
feat: Merzbow
3:44
20 5:48
21 4:10
22 2:40
23 3:15
24 2:37
25 1:02
blue highlight denotes track pick