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The Nightfly (1982)
Donald Fagen

Available at Amazon.com >>

User Rating: 5 / 5 [ Add Your Rating ]


Name:  Juergen Martens <dj.martens@t-online.de>
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  The best Steely Dan record Steely Dan never made. Great songwriting,
catchy grooves - Chuck Rainey and others with Wendell, Roger Nicols' self designed drum machine (you can hear that when you listen very carefully to the crash cymbal accents - not even Jeff Porcaro could have put them so one-on-one identical!) - and super-tasteful Rhodes by Greg Phillinganes, Michael Omartian and Fagen himself. Not to mention Larry Carlton's superb guitar contributions. A record that hasn't gathered the slightest trace of moss in the 22 years since its launch. Not as groundbreaking as the Dan's 1977 album Aja, but still far beyond most achievements in its field.


Name:  Dan Belcher <djbelc01@louisville.edu>
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  Just looking at the cover art from "The Nightfly" gives you a glimpse into the overall tone of the album. It's a very interesting concept album and is surprisingly autobiographical of Donald Fagen's life as a teenager in New York in the late 1950s and into the 1960s. In spite of a nearly mechanical groove created by mixing real drumming with Roger Nichols' infamous Wendel drum loop machine, the songs have an incredibly warm, rich atmosphere, particularly on the 5.1 surround sound DVD-Audio release (Engineers Roger Nichols and Elliot Scheiner are some of the best in the business, especially when dealing with surround sound!). And of course, a lot of this feel is generated by some excellent atmospheric Fender Rhodes. On "IGY," Greg Phillinganes opens the album with some up-front yet subtle Rhodes chords that help restrain the shuffle beat and keep this song's atmosphere in-step with the biting, sarcastic lyrics of a naive child's thoughts. On the very next song, "Green Flower Street", Phillinganes uses some powerful but rolling bass-filled Rhodes lines to define the tension of forbidden interracial love with during the period while drifting up higher to fade back down the scale as "a thousand years roll by." Michael Omartian takes center stage for the bouncy "New Frontier." Describing a party in a bomb shelter the narrator's father built (classic Fagen irony right there!), the tremolo Rhodes that closes the song leaves you wanting more. And Fagen does not disappoint--Omartian takes a seat behind the Rhodes yet again on the next song, the title track "Nightfly" and plays some incredible and tasteful fills throughout. And this is only scratching the surface of the number of incredible songs on this album. It's a great album featuring some great Fender Rhodes electric piano, period.


Name:  tracey platt
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  Excellent


Name:  Rene F.B. Isarin <r.isarin@casema.nl>
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  Simply the best album ever made (in my humble opinion)! Never a dull moment, excellent arrangements, more than excellent sound registration and production. 1982? Impossible! I'm running out of superlatives....


Name:  Kevin Hurst, Sr.
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  Another great distinct Rhodes performance on IGY! Like on Babylon Sisters the Donald used the Rhodes to get that bottom effect-


Name:  FunkyKeys
Rating:  5 / 5
Comments:  The best Rhodes record, the best Fagen/Dan record, and - simply - the best record ever.