Tap: John Zorn's Book Of Angels, Volume 20
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Pat Metheny's motivation in recording these tunes from John Zorn's 500-strong catalogue was that he might add something unique to a collection that has already seen contributions from notable musicians including Medeski Martin & Wood and Marc Ribot. In doing so, the guitarist may also have added something unique to his own discography. Certainly it would take a shrewd guess to identify the final track as a Metheny work. Before that, though, there are five tracks more readily associated with Metheny's melodic approach. He plays all the instruments except for drums, which allows regular bandmate Antonio Sanchez to drive the opening Mastema – with its looping, loping guitar figure – with stylish invention. Metheny uses guitars, sitar and his beloved orchestrion to range from the exhilarating electronic symphonies of Mastema and Tharsis, through the dark, melancholic folk balladry of Phanuel, to Albim's soulful yearning.