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November 03, 2008
EMD Int'l
Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

Album Review

The Conversation is an appropriate name for Tim Finn's eighth solo album: the music has a hushed, intimate quality that evokes the feeling of a conversation with a close friend. Old friends surface throughout The Conversation, either in their presence -- Eddie Rayner, Finn's old Split Enz cohort plays piano throughout -- or their absence, as in the case of Phil Judd, whose absence haunts "More Fool Me," a song that contains a direct quote from an early Enz song, "Matinee Idyll (129)." All of The Conversation feels as if it were built on this kind of reflective introspection or, failing that, a bit of subdued relaxation, as on the lighter "Snowbound," but it's all tied together by its quietness. Nothing about The Conversation is loud: there are no crashing drums -- there's barely any percussion -- and the arrangements are so spare they sometimes seem like nothing more than an acoustic guitar and piano graced by another vocal harmony, although closer inspection reveals some subtle, crucial texture and shading, usually derived from woodwinds or violins. Finn has never quite had an album this gentle or delicate before -- there are echoes of his melancholy 2004 collaboration with brother Neil, Everyone Is Here -- and the effect is striking: this is as naked and emotional as Tim has been on record, and its coziness feels like a secret shared between two close friends.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Straw to Gold
  2. Out of This World
  3. The Saw and the Tree
  4. Slow Mystery
  5. Rear View Mirror
  6. Only a Dream
  7. Fall from Grace
  8. Invisible
  9. Snowbound
  10. Great Return
  11. Imaginary Kingdom
  12. Forever Thursday
  13. More Fool Me
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