Musician Magazine, August 1984

GUITAR POETS & MANIACS

Tibbetts’ Safe Journey (his fourth LP and second for ECM) is anything but.

Not so much a guitar record as a kind of ambient Electric Ladyland, it liquefies the expressionist pastels of post-Eno art rock with crystalline Oregon-like folk impressions and startling streaks of heavy acid wail.  Acoustic passages like “Running” and “My Last Chance” echo with electric church-bell plucking and distant banshee wails.  In “Test” and “Vision,” Tibbetts erupts into primal Hen­drix shrieks over stampeding congas and tabla.  In the end, it’s still fusion, but there is a sobering purity about Tibbetts’ alien mix that shakes you up in some wondrous ways.

David Fricke

 

Border Crossing, Burkina Faso