Although he often seems hell-bent on topping Baskin-Robbins in terms of number of flavors offered, Ben Harper always manages to bond his diffuse stylistic influences into a cohesive sound -- one that, on his fifth studio album, manages to be both freak-flag-flying and spirit lifting. Harper concentrates on the latter to a large degree here, cribbing biblical notes on the swelling title track and waxing wide-eyed and ecstatic on "Amen Omen" and "Blessed to Be a Witness." Like kindred spirits as diverse as Al Green and Bob Marley, Harper doesn't ignore the flesh altogether: While he tempers his corporeal urges more than most rock performers, he lets loose on a few tunes here, notably the sinuous funk workout "Brown Eyed Blues." There's a good bit of air in the mix, which suits Harper's vocal quaver nicely, allowing him to dart in and out of the loping island rhythms of "My Own Two Hands" and between the wispy layers of accordion and harp that mottle "When She Believes." On Diamonds on the Inside, Harper's gems gleam with a rainbow of sounds and styles.
|Label:||Virgin Records Us|
Performance CreditsBen Harper Primary Artist,Organ,Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Drums,Electric Guitar,Rhythm Guitar,Vocals,Slide Guitar,Synthesizer Bass,Tongue Drum
Ladysmith Black Mambazo Vocals
Yasha Anderson Guitar
Carla Benson Background Vocals
John Ingram Background Vocals
Greg Kurstin Synthesizer,Piano,Celeste,Hammond Organ,Electric Piano,Background Vocals,Clavinet,Mellotron
Greg Leisz Pedal Steel Guitar
Leon Mobley Percussion,Background Vocals
David Ralicke Trombone
Josef Zimmerman Upright Bass
Juan Nelson Bass,Background Vocals
Leo Chelyapov Clarinet
Nicky P. Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Amy Wilkins Harp
Timothy Loo Cello
Darrel Sims Viola
Rebecca Yeh Cello
Ron Blake Trumpet
Misty Love Background Vocals
Oliver Francis Charles Drums,Background Vocals
Technical CreditsBen Harper Arranger,Composer,Producer
Greg Kurstin Arranger
Leon Mobley Sound Effects
Rick "Soldier" Will Engineer
Todd Burke Engineer
Juan Nelson Composer
Ben Elder Advisor
Dean Butterworth Composer
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Diamonds on the Inside based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Ben Harper is very cool and even though I don't normally like this kind of music I love his stuff. There are many different styles of music on this album but it fits together pretty well. He puts out a sweet hip-hop / blues / gospel sound with some rock mixed in. "Blessed to be a Witness," "Temporary Remedy," and "Brown Eyed Blues" are great.
Ben Harper is an extremely diverse artist and his new cd just adds to his collection of great studio albums. There is a song on the cd for every person's taste--you won't be disappointed.
After listening to this CD, I think It is Ben's best work yet. This album is a little bit funkier than his last one, but he keeps his distinctive sound and style. For fans of ben harper, this is a must have.