Now

Peter Frampton

Omnivore, 2015

http://www.frampton.com

REVIEW BY: David Bowling

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 02/03/2016

When Peter Frampton released Frampton Comes Alive during 1976, he could not have realized that it was like entering, to date, a 40 year marriage: "To love and to cherish, in sickness and in health, richer or poorer, till death do us part. It was the biggest selling album of the year and remains one of the signature live albums of its era. It also was a height he could never reach again.nbtc__dv_250

During the second half of his career, Frampton continued to released albums of well-received, if not overwhelmingly commercially successful, music. Three of those albums were re-released last year; Premonition (1986), When All The Pieces Fit (1989), and the subject of this review Now (2003).

Unlike a number of his post Frampton Comes Alive albums, Now finds Frampton not fitting into the musical trends of the day but just creating music on his own terms.

It is an album by a mature musician who is in control. He has always been an excellent guitarist, but this disc finds that brilliance more understated. It is also the album that marked the beginning of his extended relationship with Gordon Kennedy. They had written two songs together for the Almost Famous film, which led to their co-writing eight of the 11 tracks on Now.

"Verge Of A Thing" is melodic and upbeat and is the one song that reaches back into his past. "Flying Without Wings" finds him moving in a slightly jazzy direction. "Love Stands Alone" is more lyrical than musical, with Frampton looking inside himself for the story.

The six-minute "Greens" is an instrumental piece that allows him to create as he goes along. It set the foundation for his all-instrumental Grammy winning album Fingerprints three year later.

"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" is a seven-minute tribute to George Harrison, who had passed away several months before. He does not overwhelm the song but rather seduces it.

Now is an album that allows Frampton to explore new territory. If you have lost track of him over the years, this is a good way to become reacquainted.

Rating: B

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