sun 23/07/2017

CD: David Crosby – Croz | reviews, news & interviews

CD: David Crosby – Croz

CD: David Crosby – Croz

Twenty years on from his last solo outing, ol’ walrus features comes up with the goods

'Croz' is incredibly contemporary sounding
The Croz: he endures

Croz is everything a David Crosby album should be. That’s not to say it’s the sound of laurels being rested on or evidence of an artist coasting and returning to default settings. Rather, that instead it’s a statement of who this man is and why he is unique. The album – his first solo outing in 20 years – is crammed with jazzy arrangements and melodic shifts. The warm yet spare instrumentation is sympathetic and instantly identifiable as Crosby’s. The lyrics, observational and personalised, are never predictable. And his voice, still bell-like and pure, is as seductive as it has ever been. Musically, Croz is as delightful and vital a reaffirmation from a veteran artist as Roy Harper’s Man & Myth was last year.

Any knowledge that Mark Knopfler, Wynton Marsalis and LA session stalwart Leland Sklar appear on the album is superfluous. This is Crosby’s album. There are no direct signs of his legal tussles of last decade, his medical problems – lyrics are allusive nonetheless – or even echoes of Stills and Nash, although the album appears on the label he and Graham Nash co-run. Croz was made at Jackson Browne’s studio and the home studio of Crosby's son James Raymond, who acted as producer (they worked together in CPR).

The feel of this being a permanent landmark in Crosby’s catalogue is reinforced by where music is now. Crosby is central to the DNA of Fleet Foxes and Jonathan Wilson. Existing in a continuum begun in 1967 with the song “Triad”, Croz is, however, incredibly contemporary sounding.

Head straight to “If She Called”, a song written while in Belgium on tour. He saw prostitutes from his hotel, wondered how they had come there from eastern Europe and exactly how they processed the interaction between themselves and their clients. The song is about its subject matter, but also about how individuals cope. At age 72, David Crosby endures.

Visit Kieron Tyler’s blog

Overleaf: watch David Crosby talking about Croz

Watch David Crosby talking about Croz

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