CD Review – Jean-Pierre Klifa “Pixel Love”
For Jean-Pierre Klifa, the guitar is a camera; however, instead of freezing the frame it lingers on in voyeuristic fashion, capturing moments as they unravel in time. Many roots-music albums are this visual. They are usually focused on authenticity, echoing sounds of the past with vintage instrumentation and even lyrical vision. That’s not the case with Klifa. He places his emphasis on Pixel Love on atmospherics; the songs here are largely moody, gradually moving snapshots of places and situations. Weaving from progressive rock to blues and country music with his guitar, Klifa is less about displaying technical wizardry and more about storytelling. Like Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits, Klifa uses his guitar to paint slice-of-life tales.
“At the Beach” opens the record with dreamy romanticism; layers of incandescent guitars illustrate sentimental memories. Furthermore, the relaxing tones of Klifa’s playing make you feel that you are “At the Beach.” On “Dixie Prison Blues,” the warmth of Klifa’s voice soothes the melancholic ache of his guitar. “Just a Country Boy” has evening riffs that would make a fine soundtrack for a midnight drive through Memphis. There is nothing quite like Pixel Love in the Americana scene right now, and its independent spirit is much needed in this united nation of copycats.