Take Me to the Land of Hell

Take Me to the Land of Hell

by Plastic Ono BandPlastic Ono Band


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The Plastic Ono Band's 2009 return Between My Head and the Sky was cause for celebration for Yoko Ono fans, so it's heartening that Take Me to the Land of Hell -- which was released the same year as Ono's 80th birthday -- picks up pretty much where that album left off. Once again working with her son Sean Lennon and a crack team of collaborators including Yuka Honda, Nels Cline, and Cornelius' Keigo Oyamada, Ono sings about the things that matter -- peace, war, New York, dancing -- over sounds that are nearly as diverse as Between My Head and the Sky. Ono immediately throws listeners into the deep end with a pair of songs so potent, they could have come from the band's heyday: "Moonbeams" is mystical and fierce, with sheets of raw guitars supporting her as she intones "My spirit appears like the sun at dawn" and vocalizes with her one-of-a-kind intensity. Meanwhile, the funky takedown of the American dream "Cheshire Cat Cry" sounds even more like the Plastic Ono Band's early-'70s work, but its rallying cry "Stop the violence/Stop all wars" -- as well as the way Ono implores "Who needs it?!" at the end of the song -- is urgent and timeless. Take Me to the Land of Hell spends equal time with the playful electronic direction Ono pursued in the 2000s, and "Bad Dancer" and "Tabetai," a collaboration with tUnE-yArDs' Merrill Garbus, are standouts. However, Take Me to the Land of Hell often feels sadder and more reflective than Between My Head and the Sky. Some of its finest moments are as harrowing as they are beautiful: a ghostly loneliness pervades the title track, and on "Little Boy Blue Your Daddy's Gone," Ono's despairing attempts at comfort become increasingly wrenching until her wails ring out after the music ends. Even some of the more lighthearted songs here have a remarkable poignancy, whether it's the bittersweet love song to Ono's adopted city "N.Y. Noodle Town" or the charming breakup song "Leaving Tim," where she sings, "Let's throw that past in the biggest trash can/Our life spent, a lifetime." By the time "Shine, Shine"'s white-hot dance-rock brings the album to a triumphant close, Take Me to the Land of Hell delivers performances with the kind of weight -- and lightness -- that can only come from an artist entering her ninth decade.

Product Details

Release Date: 09/24/2013
Label: Chimera Music
UPC: 0616892150442
catalogNumber: 19
Rank: 64265

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Plastic Ono Band   Primary Artist
Lenny Kravitz   Drums,Clavinet
Nels Cline   Percussion,Electric Guitar,Loops,Lap Steel Guitar
Yoko Ono   Vocals
Erik Friedlander   Cello
Joyce Hammann   Violin
Yuka Honda   Synthesizer,Keyboards,Sampling,fender rhodes
Lois Martin   Viola
Doug Wieselman   Bass Clarinet
Sean Lennon   Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Percussion,Piano,Conductor,Electric Guitar,Vocals,Kalimba,Shaker
Bill Dobrow   Percussion,Drums
Michael Leonhart   Percussion,Mellowphone
?uestlove   Drums
Andrew Wyatt   fender rhodes
Julian Lage   Acoustic Guitar
Thomas Bartlett   Piano
Kevin Harper   Bottle
Shahzad Ismaily   Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Percussion
Keigo Oyamada   Synthesizer,Bass,Electric Guitar
Jared Samuel   Synthesizer,Percussion,Hammond B3
Hirotaka "Shimmy" Shimizu   Electric Guitar
Merrill Garbus   Percussion,Drums,Vocals,Bottle,fender rhodes
Yuko Araki   Percussion,Drums
Nate Brenner   Bass,Percussion,Vocals,Bottle
Christopher Sean Powell   Percussion

Technical Credits

Yoko Ono   Composer,Producer,Drawing
Adam Horovitz   Programming,Remixing,beats
Mike D   Programming,Remixing,beats
Erik Friedlander   String Arrangements
Yuka Honda   Producer
Sean Lennon   Producer,drum machine,drum programming
Cornelius   Remixing
Geoff Thorpe   Art Direction
Toru Takayama   Engineer
Mark Bengston   Pro-Tools
Greg Kadel   Cover Photo
Christopher Allen   Engineer

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