The Upshot: The production, composing, arrangements, and playing make it something uniquely special in the Paul Weller catalogue.
BY TIFFINI TAYLOR
Many have asked before me, “What happened to rock ‘n’ Roll?” or have asked and wondered “What happened to new wave, mod rock, or punk?” Well, the answer is here—Paul Weller is what we have all been waiting for and wanting. Weller, of course is known by music enthusiasts from his previous bands, The Jam and The Style Council, both amazing.
Now, Weller has a new album, A Kind Revolution, and it is a beautiful masterpiece. He is a rare breed who has had a long and successful career, one who may be considered a national talent in Britain, but the type that any true music fan will appreciate for his longevity. I also think this will be the album that will make damn sure he is appreciated as an international talent. A Kind of Revolution has a great, solid sound throughout; one can discern the blues, jazz, and mod rock influences unique to Weller. It is what rock ‘n’ roll forever means. Again, this is the answer we all have been waiting for.
The album starts with a hard rocking sound and ends with great mod rock that even the late David Bowie would love. Consider each track:
- “Woo Se Momma” – Solid, hard rocking with a blues twist; strong guitar throughout, with a hint of good vibes thrown into the mix. Everything works.
- “Nova” – Dreamlike beginning with a dark voice along with keyboards, reminiscent of the great new wave from the 1980s. Yet again, great guitar throughout.
- “Long Long Road” – Beautiful, just beautiful. The music for this song brought a tear to my eye. Well done Mr. Weller.
- “She Moves with the Fayre” – Looking for a song just to mellow out to? Then look no further. The guitars and drums are lined with a hint of strings and horns. This is the best to mellow out and relax to, grab a glass of your favorite beverage, and enjoy.
- “The Cranes Are Back” – Beautiful piano to augment the guitars and rhythms makes for a wonderful arrangement—pure pleasantry to the ears. (Let everyone know the Cranes are back.)
- “Hopper” – Simplicity at its best from wonderfully talented musicians, and a unique horns/drums/piano/guitar arrangement, all guaranteed to bring a smile to your face.
- “New York” –This is a rock song with a gritty feel, best described as a unique sound matching its title. The interesting arrangement holds surprises, a bit of jazz, a bit of blues, and rock all rolled into a beautiful package. (I love New York, just wanted to throw that in, it’s my city and I miss it.)
- “One Tear” – There’s a melodic-rhythmic element here that’s almost psychedelic in feel throughout. Included is a short guitar solo that’s mixed in with what sounds like a rain storm.
- “Satellite Kid” – Loving the dirty guitar for this—welcome to rock’n’roll! A lot can be learned just from the guitar playing: Take lessons, all you up and comers. The solo in particular is destined to become one of my all-time favorites. All guitar fans should listen to this song.
- “The Impossible Idea” – This is the last song on the album, and when I first saw the title, my thought went straight to the impossible girl in Who. (Yes, I’m a nerd.) It’s a lovely-composed song with a dreamy voice to match the music. The string arrangement will make you swoon and sway, a great way to end an album.
The production, composing, arrangements, and playing makes A Kind Revolution something uniquely special in the Paul Weller catalogue. Weller is a talent like no other, and you will not be disappointed.
DOWNLOAD: “Long Long Road,” “New York,” “Satellite Kid”
Photo Credit: Tom Beard