|Artist: James Johnson|
Our technological age has brought out in us the desire and ability to make a record of significant moments in our lives. Photographs, videos and sound recordings all attempt to capture a piece of the multi-dimensionality of life experiences, yet as advanced as these mediums have become it is still impossible for any recording to acurately capture the many facets of a live performance. On his album Linger, James Johnson has succeeded in at least bringing back the wonderful true sound and inspired music of his concert at Toronto's "Ambient Ping" in August of 2000.
Johnson's accomplishment on Linger is the demostration of an impressive musical range brought out by a unique performance environment and the heightened emotional state certain musicians reach under optimal conditions. The album's five tracks engage and stimulate the listener as effectively in the personal listening space as it surely did at the concert venue. Present on the tracks "Frequency Shift" and the aptly titled "Floating and Dreaming" are Johnson's signature deep drift soundworlds. On "Siren Song", we wander along a multi-layered sonic landscape of ambient piano musings and distant chords. The album also treats us to Johnson's little known pulse music with "Riding the Fog Line", a thirteen minute cerebral journey into the full emotional power offered by the rhythmic and timbral elements of the spacemusic genre. As well crafted as the music is on Linger, the success of this album must be traced back to something that can not ever be recorded, measured or quantified, something felt rather than seen - the energy and inspiration of the performance space.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 28 March 2001