Daniel Lanois, Acadie
Another haunting masterpiece from a studio giant
Daniel Lanois is best known for taking the studio out of the studio, insisting that albums can be made anywhere you can hang a few mics, and proving it with sonically powerful, musically compelling albums by the Neville Brothers, Bob Dylan and U2. (Yes, he also worked with Peter Gabriel, but Gabriel kept him firmly locked in his own studio. More's the pity.) His own albums extend all that's best about his productions — a rich and distinctive sonic palette, a sense of rightness and conviction, a swampy groove that lets the beat lag just slightly and then play catch-up in a soulful lurch — and adds the warmth and fervor of his voice and the slow simmer of his songs to the equation. "Still Water" and "The Maker" still startle with their dark mystery and gravity.