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Album Review

Violinist Casey Driessen cannot be accurately termed a jazz player or a country artist, yet this recording straddles the line between both genres. Stylistically, he's closer to Alison Krauss than Vassar Clemens or Natalie McMaster, but his sound reflects the surreal nature of Jerry Goodman or Jean-Luc Ponty rather than the harmonically inclined Stéphane Grappelli. Using riffs more than improvisation, and Celtic or fiddle based square dance rather than swing, Driessen and his band, with the estimable electric bassist Viktor Krauss and drummer Matt Chamberlain, make music that borrows equally from rural and urban sources. Most of the music is composed and arranged by Driessen, save the fiddled Bill Monroe number "Ashland Breakdown" with background loops, the vocalized alamain-styled public domain tune "Conversation with Death," and Fred Rose's poppish waltz "I'm Satisfied with You". Driessen's "Uncontinental Breakfast" is the closest to an ethnic fusion in its electric raga like stance enhanced by lap steel guitar, "Green Flash" and "Hummingbirds vs. Yellowjackets" are obvious quarter-note based Irish jig/funk, and "Hunt for the Quail Egg" is the most exuberant and upbeat track on the date, featuring guitarist Darrell Scott. Rhythms both whirring and stomping identify "Lunar Cages" while Driessen's soaring violin keeps the dynamic level in check within the mezzo piano range. The pensive yet sweet waltz "Flexible Helix" is the most tuneful track, while heavy drumming, echoed guitar, and modal bass sounds different from the rest of the material on the bonus track "Regarding Life This Far," which follows a curious, untitled, tacit null cut. Driessen's violin playing, and especially his vocal style lack individual distinction, though his music displays a vision few musicians can claim. Further explorations and recordings should realize expanded ideas from this clearly talented musician. ~ Michael G. Nastos, Rovi

Customer Reviews

awsom new album

Get job way better then 3D im not saying that was bad just that this one was way better

Great Artist

Saw him at a Zac Brown concert and he was amazing great music and great musician.

Love

Dancing, all morning. I love every song. So creative. So emotive. Beautiful!

Biography

Genre: Country

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Genre-defying fiddle player Casey Driessen set his sights on a music career at the age of six. His instrumental prowess was powered by Suzuki lessons, the Berklee College of Music, and a keen ear for the progressive fiddle styles of Vassar Clements, Darol Anger, and Byron Berline. He has performed with Steve Earle, Tim O'Brian, Béla Fleck, John Mayer, and countless...
Full Bio
Oog, Casey Driessen
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