5 (Bonus Tracks) (1998)
|Artist: Lenny Kravitz|
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|"5" A collage of sounds and styles, of hip-hop grooves and rock guitar, classic melody and 21st century ambience, "5" is Lenny Kravitz at his most eclectic -- and his best. Of the record's range, Lenny says, "Making this album, I felt like a kid with a box of crayons. And I used all the colors." An aesthetic chameleon ever since his 1989 debut "Let Love Rule," Kravitz has never been comfortable with borders, boxes, limitations. And with "5," a fascinating mix of old and new, of vintage Lenny and Lenny-right-now, he's again reinventing himself. "The album took eight months because I had to learn a whole new style of recording," Kravitz says. Lenny produced himself -- and enlisted the legendary Terry Manning as engineer (Al Green, ZZ Top, Led Zeppelin, Staple Singers). |
At the beginning of his career Lenny pioneered a return to basic recording; this time Kravitz embraced hi-tech, incorporating his own samples and loops into his trademark tube-amp, down 'n' dirty recording approach. "No tape this time," Lenny says, "and 'digital' used to be a dirty word for me. But by working instrument by instrument, building up the sound, I was able to construct the record like a puzzle. I was listening to a lot of New York hip-hop. I like that technique - the sparseness, the groove, the rhythm." As always, the multi-instrumentalist plunged into marathon studio sessions, sixteen-hour days in New York and the Bahamas crafting sounds. The result? Lenny's fiercest, fullest music -- the vocals crisp and immediate, the instrumentation surprising (everything from wah-wah guitar to mellotron and mini-moog to "green Heineken bottles" as percussion). Craig Ross is again on hand, turning in hot guitar. Lenny's horn players Michael Hunter and Harold Todd are given space to soar. Female back-up vocals (an unusual twist for Kravitz) add elegance and heart. And Lenny's own work - playing all the instruments - is more fluid than ever.
Album Notes and Credits
Notes & Personnel Info
|This version of 5 replaces the previous version and contains two bonus tracks.|
|Personnel: Lenny Kravitz (vocals, acoustic & ecectric guitars, piano, Fender Rhodes piano, Clavinet, Mellotron, Hammond B-3 organ, synthesizers, Mini-Moog synthesizer, Moog bass, bass, drums, percussion, congas, hand claps, drum programming); Craig Ross (guitar, slide guitar, Mini-Moog synthesizer); Harold Todd (saxophone); Michael Hunter (trumpet); George Laks (Clavinet, Mini-Moog synthesizer); Alex Alvarez (Moog synthesizer); Terry Manning (toy piano); Jack Daley (bass); Cindy Blackman (drums); Stephen Dorff, Nehemiah Heild, Sunovia Piere, Natalie Dekoning, Angie Stone, Stefanie Bolton, Tenita Drehe, Susan Marshall, Jacquie Johnson (background vocals).|
|"Fly Away" won the 1999 Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance.|
|On 5, Lenny Kravitz continues to push the envelope of creativity. Defying the traditional genre categories of pop, rock, soul and alternative, 5 provides the listener with Kravitz's most far-reaching creation to date. Hip-Hop drum loops, Electronica textures and vintage Fender Rhodes, Hammond B-3 organ and Moog keyboard sounds interact throughout the disc, solidly backed by Kravitz's trademark guitar sound. As usual, Lenny plays most of the instruments on the album, from drums to bass. Delivering the goods as a songwriter and musician, Kravitz is truly a mega-talent.|
|As his influences range from Led Zeppelin to Parliament, Kravitz can combine classic songwriting with '90s sampled-based vibes. 5 is filled with standard Kravitz-type, beautifully sung, well-crafted songs such as "If You Can't Say No", "Thinking of You" and "Can We Find a Reason." Although Kravitz hasn't yet fully reached the vast commercial potential of his talent, 5 will appeal to music buyers from vastly different categories.|
Producer: Lenny Kravitz
Engineer: Terry Manning; Tom Edmonds
Associated Artists and Works
|Release Date : 06/01/1999|
|Original Release Date : 1998|
|Catalog ID : CDVUSX 140|
|Label : Virgin|
|Number of Discs : 1|
|Studio/Live : Studio|
|Mono/Stereo : Stereo|
|SPAR Code : n/a|
|UPC : 00724384775827|
- "...Lenny Kravitz is a multi-talented multi-instrumentalist capable of cranking out formulaic yet tasteful ballads, retro 1960s rump shakers, and stirring anthems of grandeur..."
- "...The most attractive aspect of Kravitz's songs is their ability to transport you elsewhere..."
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