JR Bohannon - Dusk
Sublime guitar work from John Bohannon of Ancient Oceans on his debut solo LP for Shahzad Ismaily's Figureight. Imagine if you will, an Appalachian counterpoint to Gustavo Sanaolalla's stunning Babel soundtrack, or a more pastoral version of Will Oldham's Old Joy, or some of John Fahey's work. Its a beautiful journey through an American past, but one loaded with references to modern American minimalism. Plus, the last track is a folk-Sabbath jam with Greg Fox on the drums - like a heavenly bonus!!!
Dusk is the result of many years of writing. While Bohannon’s debut EP Recôncavo (released April 2019 on Phantom Limb) introduced a new artist with great ability, Dusk lands exactly on his sound. The years of performing with virtuosic traditional bluegrass and folk musicians, with Merge Records’ Torres and NYC supergroup Gold Dime have refined his skill to incisive perfection, imbibing a luminant lyricism into his instrumental guitar playing. Bohannon was determined not to write “just another acoustic guitar album,” which is starkly evident in Dusk.
Opening track “Reflections of an American Dream” sings with beautiful mysticism, melodies interlacing about the jangling of open strings and the ghosts of great America past, with the open road, the dusty trail, the mountainous expanse. “A Continuous Harmony”, later in the record, sees a guest double bass performance from avant-jazz mainstay Luke Stewart, whose low and languorous lines calm Bohannon’s hummingbird-wing guitar picking. Album closer “The Sorcerer’s Hand” is an improvised piece, featuring NYC master drummer Greg Fox and again Stewart on bass. The combination sounds like a Black Sabbath ballad performed by Appalachian musicians.