CD Can You Fly (CD 248926),
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Can You Fly

  • 1. Trying to Tell You I Don't Know
    2. In the New Sunshine
    3. Tearing Down This Place
    4. Remember Me
    5. Wheels
    6. Lucky One, The
    7. Can You Fly
    8. Responsible
    9. Mortician's Daughter, The
    10. Sincere
    11. Down in Love
    12. California Thing
    13. We Will Shine
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): BAR NONE-24-

  • Credits
    ProducerGraham Maby; Knut Bohn
    EngineerDon Sternacker; James MacMillan; John Siket; Jon Rosenberg; Knut Bohn

    Personnel: Freedy Johnston (vocals, guitar, bass); Syd Straw (vocals); Knut Bohn (guitar, organ, percussion, background vocals); Graham Maby (guitar, acoustic & electric basses, background vocals); Kevin Salem (guitar, background vocals); Bob Rupe, Jimmy Lee (guitar); Dave Schramm (lap steel guitar); Jane Scarpantoni (cello); Kenny Margolis (accordion); Marshall Crenshaw, Jared Michael Nickerson, James MacMillan (bass); Alan Bezozi (drums, marching drum, tambourine, wind chimes, percussion); Brian Doherty (drums, percussion).
    Recorded at Water Music Recorders, Hoboken, New Jersey in January, February and December 1991.
    Personnel: Freedy Johnston (vocals, guitar); Graham Maby (guitar, background vocals); Kevin Salem, Marshall Crenshaw, Bob Rupe (guitar); Chris Stamey (electric guitar); Dave Schramm (steel guitar); Jane Scarpantoni (cello); Kenny Margolis (accordion); Knut Bohn (organ, background vocals); Alan Bezozi (keyboards, tambourine, percussion); Brian Doherty (drums).
    Audio Mixers: Knut Bohn; Larry Alexander .
    Recording information: Mixolydian Studios, Boonton, NJ (01/1991-12/1991); Skyline, New York, NY (01/1991-12/1991); Water Music Recorders, Hoboken, NJ (01/1991-12/1991).
    Freedy Johnston's second album is the one that brought him to the attention of the world at large. A mere two years later, the somewhat callow alt-rock of his debut is transformed into a rich tapestry with tinges of folk, country, and power-pop. Johnston's lyrics take a giant step forward as well. Their slightly elliptical quality seems poetic rather than vague. The subtle twists of the arrangements and the undeniably catchy melodies and riffs of many of the songs bespeak an advancement of melodic sensibility as well. Freedy's artistic progress paid off, as respected critics tripped over themselves to praise CAN YOU FLY to the heavens.
    As on much of his subsequent material, there's a distinctly downcast sentiment at work here. The bleakly poignant "Tearing Down This Place" views the destruction of a relationship through the metaphor of a building's demolition. The gorgeous ballad "Down In Love," a duet with Syd Straw, makes broken-heartedness seem like a vocation. There's a mitigating ray of light on the final song, though. "We Will Shine," a shimmering, countryish ballad, beautifully details the simple pleasures of an unspectacular long-term relationship.

  • Critic Reviews
    Q (10/93, p.120) - 3 Stars - Good - "...atmospheric stuff that nails the prevailing mood [on CAN YOU FLY], sombre yet never dispiriting..."
    Option (July-Aug./92, p.109) - "...Freedy Johnston certainly can! For once the hype is right...Johnston is achingly honest...a true rarity: a unique and talented singer-songwriter..."
    Village Voice (3/2/93, p.5) - Ranked #28 in the Village Voice's list of the 40 Best Albums Of 1992.
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