Paul Simon – You’re The One (2000/2015) [PonoMusic FLAC 24bit/96kHz]

Paul Simon – You’re The One (2000/2015)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96kHz  | Time – 00:56:39 minutes | 1.07 GB | Genre: Folk Rock
Official Digital Download – Source: PonoMusic | © Warner Bros. Records
Recorded: 1999 – 2000

The disaster of Songs from the Capeman hit Paul Simon particularly hard, so he decided to quickly record a new album, his first proper collection of songs since 1990’s The Rhythm of the Saints — his first album in ten years, really. Nevertheless, if this album has a relative, it’s 1982’s Hearts and Bones, since it’s a deliberately low-key, insular record, especially when compared to the sweeping worldbeat explorations of Graceland and Rhythm. But where Hearts and Bones was a singer/songwriter album, no two ways about it, You’re the One illustrates the influence of its predecessors, but it’s not showy about it. The African and South American rhythms are as much a foundation of Simon’s music as folk is, and his compositions reflect it, boasting surprisingly tricky rhythms that carry through to his melodies themselves. That, combined with Simon’s determination to meet aging head-on, makes You’re the One a bit of an acquired taste, especially since its compositions are never overtly accessible and melodic — they’re all tone poems, driven as much by tone and lyric as song itself. This all results in a record that may be a little too deliberately low-key and elliptical for most tastes, especially since it demands full concentration even from serious fans. But this does reward close listening, and even if it doesn’t shine as brilliantly as Hearts and Bones (his most underappreciated record), it does share some similarities in that it’s an unassumingly intellectual record that feels like it was made without an audience in mind. Which means it’s more interesting than successful, but interesting can have its own rewards. –Stephen Thomas Erlewine, AllMusic

On his new album, You’re the One, Paul Simon lowers the conceptual heat that typically surrounds his projects. After the South African and Brazilian journeys of, respectively, Graceland (1986) and The Rhythm of the Saints (1990) — and the foray into musical theater on Songs From ‘The Capeman’ (1997) — it must have seemed like the right time for a more straightforward collection of songs. “Somewhere in a burst of glory/Sound becomes a song/I’m bound to tell a story/That’s where I belong,” Simon sings on the new album’s opening track, and the comfort and command he displays throughout You’re the One demonstrate that he’s right.
Of course, “straightforward” is a relative term. Musically, the eleven songs here center on guitar-bass-percussion arrangements, with occasional keyboards, strings and wind instruments providing additional texture. In Simon’s way, the melodies are lucid, simple in the best sense of the term. The album’s overall impression is of quietness and introspection.
Direct as they may seem to be, however, many of these songs are not so quick to yield their meanings. You’re the One comes out a week or so before Simon’s fifty-ninth birthday, and age — not to mention marriage and fatherhood — has evidently done little to temper his unsentimental view of love and its elusive promises. Take what would initially seem to be the heartfelt declaration of the album’s title song. By the tune’s chorus, devotion unpredictably transforms into accusation: “You’re the one/You broke my heart/You made me cry.” Ever the cool observer, Simon shakes his head philosophically: “Nature gives us shapeless shapes/Clouds and waves and flame/But human expectation/Is that love remains the same.”
That expectation rarely is met, and the netherworld where unending possibility mysteriously disintegrates into inexplicable loss is Simon’s great thematic terrain. In “Darling Lorraine,” what the singer calls love is really a desperate hedge against his inner fears — and what may well be his murderous rage. Alongside a droning organ part, the trancelike “Quiet” suggests that death — “When the perfect circle/Marries all beginnings and conclusions” — may ultimately be the only deliverance from the maddening inner chatter of our anxieties.
But everything is not so grim. Over energetic guitar chords reminiscent of Buddy Holly, who gets name-checked in the song, “Old” has some fun with the inevitability (if you’re lucky) of aging. And the delicate ballad “Love” intimates that, despite our loneliness and panic at the prospect of abandonment, love is “free as air/Like plants, the medicine is everywhere.”
At times, Simon allows the power of his lyrics to disintegrate into abstraction. “The Teacher” and “Pigs, Sheep and Wolves,” for example, strive for allegorical richness but never quite achieve it. They’re either too obvious or too complex — it’s hard to tell which. But You’re the One can still take a worthy place in Simon’s esteemed body of work. This album may not lead you to the music of other continents. But it provides a map of the shifting geography of our emotional lives — the yearning vulnerability of our hearts, the intractable terror in our bones — and it’s all the more valuable for that. –Anthony DeCurtis, RollingStone

Tracklist:
1 That’s Where I Belong 3:12
2 Darling Lorraine 6:39
3 Old 2:20
4 You’re The One 4:28
5 The Teacher 3:36
6 Look At It 3:54
7 Señorita With A Necklace Of Tears 3:42
8 Love 3:50
9 Pigs, Sheep And Wolves 3:59
10 Hurricane Eye 4:12
11 Quiet 4:17
Bonus Tracks:
Live From “You’re The One: In Concert”; Warner Home Video *38529; January 2001
12 That’s Where I Belong 3:42
13 Old 2:40
14 Hurricane Eye 6:00

Personnel:
Paul Simon – vocals (all tracks), acoustic guitar (tracks 7, 8, 10), electric guitar (tracks 1-4, 6-8, 10), sitar[1] (track 8)
Steve Gorn – bamboo flute (tracks 1, 5, 6, 8)
Larry Campbell – pedal steel guitar (tracks 5, 6)
Dan Duggan – hammer dulcimer (track 10)
Jay Elfenbein – vielle (track 1), vihuela (tracks 1, 2, 11)
Steve Gadd – drums (tracks 1-7, 9, 10)
Jamey Haddad – percussion (tracks 1-10)
Peter Herbert – upright bass (tracks 4, 11)
Bakithi Khumalo – bass (tracks 1-4, 7-9)
Skip LaPlante – harp (tracks 7, 11), bowls (track 11), whirly tube (track 11)
Abraham Laboriel – bass (tracks 5, 6, 10)
Howard Levy – harmonica (track 5)
Alain Mallet – pump reed organ (tracks 4, 7, 11), wurlitzer (track 1)
Vincent Nguini – acoustic guitar (track 10), electric guitar (tracks 1-4, 6, 8-10)
Stanley Silverman – arrangement of french horns (tracks 2, 5)
Andy Snitzer – soprano (track 3) & tenor (tracks 2, 4) saxophone
Evan Ziporyn – bass clarinet (tracks 1, 5), soprano (track 3) & tenor (track 2, 4) saxophone
Clifford Carter – celeste (tracks 2, 6, 10), keyboard glockenspiel (track 10)
Mark Stewart – dobro (track 7, 9, ), cello (track 2), electric guitar (track 2), sitar (tracks 7), banjo (track 10), pedal steel gong (track 9), tromba doo (track 11)
Steve Shehan – percussion (tracks 1-10)

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