With 'Miracles for Beginners', Nick Harper has achieved the almost-impossible: he has made his best album ever. This is a stunning, emotional, well-produced, sweeping and (dare I say it) mature piece of work that stands as a song cycle as well as it does a group of amazing songs.
Nick's voice may never have sounded better and richer, and the harmonies he creates with himself are really stuck in my head ages after the songs are over. And, though not one electric guitar is included in the mix, tracks on the album rock out quite hard! Hopefully this should answer Nick's critics who say his studio albums are never as effective as his live work, and will give him some of the popular recognition he sorely deserves.
The overwhelming theme is love, as it was in 'Blood Songs'. 'Miracles...' is more an ode to romantic and everlasting love, without being mawkish or soppy in any way. It's almost impossible to pick just a few of the 10, but standout tracks for me include 'Always' (a deceptively simple love song that states perfectly - and with typical Harpic humour - how it feels to love someone, just because), 'Blue Sky Thinking' (the single with amazing guitar work), '2 Secs' (as a previous reviewer mentioned) and 'Simple', which is both simple and anything but at the same time.
42 may be Douglas Adams' answer to life, the universe and everything, but these gorgeous 42 minutes are my answer to the best album of 2007.