Recorded live at various sites, cities and continents during 1996
Mixed March-97 at Starec, Vaxjo, Sweden
JEx-John McLaughlin electric bass guitarist Jonas Hellborg gains considerable notoriety for his flashy style, huge sound, undeniable virtuosity, and monster chops. This recording showcases his trio on various concert dates worldwide, with electric guitarist Shawn Lane and drummer Jeff Sipe in tow. It is Lane who steals the show - his fluid, exciting, stinging lines need nothing more than a little amplification to get the point across. The power trio acts as Beck, Bogert & Appice wannabes, except that Lane plays perfectly in tune. All the members claim co-writing credit on the six hard-nosed jams. "Heretics" is a heavy metal New Orleans shuffle, with boogie bass and a finger-popping solo from the leader. "Wherever You Walk" has a cool swing funk about it that is undeniably jazzy, featuring Lane's clean, musical, teeth-gritting guitar. Darker rhythms with echoey chords set to loping six/eight rhythm and rock bass signify the developed piece "Space Time Continuum," and the hard funk of "The King's Letter" has the most dizzying, steely guitar licks. A slower funk "Barua a Soldani" cuts Hellborg loose on an extended solo, while the closing title track is another hard rock-funk that stretches the confines of fusion into a vehicle for Lane to dig in a bit more. As much as fusion has grown stale over the years, this trio is pumping some stark vitality into it, keeping it alive. Shawn Lane is the man, and Hellborg has to sit back and marvel at what he's capable of.
This album has been remastered at Mar 30, 2004, repackaged and nicely priced.
All Music Guide
Time is the Enemy was assembled during a particularly productive period for the trio of Jonas Hellborg, Shawn Lane, and Jeff Sipe. It was recorded live at various unidentified locations around the world during 1996. Other recordings surrounding this original 1997 release, now remastered, include the live Temporal Analogs of Paradise , also recently remastered. As a set, these two recordings document the brilliant improvisatory empathy held by these three fusion experts. Sadly, the remastering and release of Time is the Enemy coincides with the unfortunate death of guitarist Shawn Lane.
The late Lane finds himself in superb form, playing in every style imaginable. "Heretics" is a molten, corrosive Southern shuffle, complete with a finger-slapping solo from Hellborg. Darker rhythms with cave chords to complex polyrhythms and rock bottom bass characterize "Space Time Continuum," and the diamond funk of "The King's Letter" intoxicates with its precise guitar work by Lane.
This trio was making fusion fun and interesting again. I do not suspect that Hellborg will find another Lane for a long time, if ever. While Time is the Enemy, as well as Temporal Analogs of Paradise, could be viewed as live power trio orgy and excess, that in itself has it place. This music is virtuosic and stays true to the bare essence of jazz: totally improvised and totally honest.