Tooth Of Crime

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Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The producer of many albums releases an album of songs from the Sam Shepard musical "The Tooth of Crime: Second Dance."

Top Track

Kill Zone
We stood together in the open field And heard the secret that the night revealed Then we chased the lie Racing through the sky Can we untangle guilt... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. It’s a sonic adventure thanks to Burnett’s current signatures: booming drum kits sans cymbals, knotty guitars, lyrics sung through amplifiers, and an open, airy quality that’s the antithesis of modern rock production.
  2. Burnett has fashioned a sumptuously spooky, if lyrically opaque, work that feels both spacious and claustrophobic.
  3. Tooth of Crime is a smart, absorbing, and beautifully disquieting collection of songs that could have come from no one else but T Bone Burnett, and it shows that one of America's best songwriters may be working at a very deliberate pace but he still has some remarkable things left to tell us.
  4. Much of the album features a heavily minor-saturated tone complimented by dissonant brass chords and harmonies that emphasize the play’s catastrophic surrealism.
  5. The lyrics are nearly as evocative, with Burnett issuing detective-novel threats ("I can stir you like a Bloody Mary") and spinning dystopian sci-fi fantasies. But too often, on songs such as the droney 'Dope Island' (a duet with ex Sam Phillips), Burnett's melodies veer between off-puttingly strange and nonexistent.
  6. 60
    While there is no doubting the power of Marc Ribot’s off-kilter twanging or the noirish density of the music, the songs don’t really work on their own.
  7. Q Magazine
    But even knowing that [it's inspired by a Sam Shepard play], it's impossible to tell what's going on. [June 2008, p.149]

See all 11 Critic Reviews

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