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Orchestrion by Pat Metheny
Released: Jan 2010
Label: Nonesuch
Pat Metheny has remade the orchestrion, a group of instruments from the late 1800s that are programmed to play on their own in the same manner as a player piano. Before you start thinking that Metheny is popping and locking to blurting synths, take a listen -- this actually recalls the guitarist's intricate, new-agey crossover material with his band and his leaner, more bop-orientated work with various smaller groups. Overall, these intricate "self-playing" percussive instruments sound organic and natural -- a lot like Pat Metheny's playing.
Nick Dedina

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