- Audio CD (27 Sept. 2010)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD
- Label: Columbia Records
- ASIN: B003LPUM5Y
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 19,433 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Record Collection CD
|Price:||£4.14 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details|
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Record Collection is the third album headed up by the mid-Atlantic muso mastermind and, as usual, he’s brought a host of famous friends and former collaborators along for the ride. The follow-up to 2007’s triple platinum Version--which sold one million copies in the UK and saw Ronson score the Best Male Solo Artist gong at the Brit Awards--is every bit as impressive as it’s predecessor. This time however, Ronson has made a point of ripping up the rule book that he had written so well. So it’s goodbye to the Dap Kings and their horn-y break downs and au revoir to the innovative cover versions. Instead, Ronson is saying hello to Brooklyn b-boy sonics, swirling retro synthesized sounds and the kind of off-kilter pop sixth sense that it’s impossible not to move to.
Recorded at Dunham studios in Brooklyn and working with vintage keyboards, the album melds eighties indie to nineties hip hop beats and also sees someone rather special take to the mic... "Lose It (In The End)" was co-written by Jonathan Pierce of The Drums and features rhymes from Ghostface Killah and vocals from Mark Ronson himself. The old school flavour of the album is behind much of its charm. "The Bike Song"--co-written by the Zutons’ Dave McCabe and with laid back, but never lazy, vocals from The View’s Kyle Falconer--boasts an almost psychedelic sixties vibe while the warm doo-wop of "The Night Last Night" is brought to glorious life by former Pipette Rose Elinor Dougall.
"Somebody To Love Me" is another highlight. Jake Shears of Scissors Sisters, Cathy Dennis, erstwhile Dirty Pretty Thing Anthony Rossomando, and Andrew Wyatt all had a hand in writing what Ronson describes as a ‘bionic’ song. Then he persuaded Boy George, to sing this song of ‘earnest blue-eyed soul’ and a lost club classic with a modern twist.
He’s a handsome chap, that Mark Ronson. if you've looked at a men's magazine in the past three months, chances are you've spotted him plugging this record by wearing suits snazzier than the trumpets that so adorned Version, his mega-selling, guest-star, er, trumpeting, breakthrough second album. This time round, though, the covers are gone. As are the parpy horns. But the guests remain and, as ever, it's a contacts-book filling rump of talent that’s been assembled to write and perform around Ronson's productions.
Ronson is no ghostly Phil Spector hanging back in the distance, though – he's an accomplished multi-instrumentalist who bounds around between guitars and keys, only sometimes settling on just producing and arranging. He even sings on the title-track. The songs are written in teams containing everyone from pop machine Cathy Dennis to ex-Libertine Anthony Rossomando and Phantom Planet man Alex Greenwald – the latter sang Version's take on Radiohead's Just.
Some of the collaborations fizz with the combination of energies and experiences. Boy George sings Somebody To Love Me which, despite being written by – count 'em – eight people who are quite specifically not Boy George, finds the former Culture Clubber pouring his heart out about his troubles of the last few years. It's great. Also fun is RnB crooner D’Angelo taking the logical next step towards sounding like he's auditioning for TV on the Radio on the gaudy pop synths of Glass Mountain Trust.
The problem with having so many different voices writing and performing is that Record Collection sounds like just that – a lot of different things plonked on a shelf that have their time and place but sound distractingly disparate when grouped together. And this feeling even distils down to individual songs – variety is the spice of life, but you wonder if the world needs a song as over-flavoured as Record Collection, written by (and sounding like it) one of the Kaiser Chiefs with an intro by Wiley, a chorus by Simon Le Bon and Ronson himself doing his best to keep up vocally during the verses.
Despite that, Record Collection is an infinitely more likable record than Version – even if The Bike Song makes you want to go and kick in some spokes. The cast list is great and some of the songs are excellent. Ever the businessman, Ronson must get props for his abilities to bring so much talent together; he's probably the only pop star you'd trust to organise a booze-up in a brewery.--Will Dean
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Top Customer Reviews
Unlike a lot of other 80's influenced artists there are no silly overly poppy synthesiser noises on this album and it doesn't feel like he is trying too hard to be overly eighties - sometimes with 'retro' bands it's like having a rubiks cube smashed into your face. In comparison this album is nice and laid back and yet funky too and is more R&B-fusion than it is retro - there's lots of rappers and big beats similar to Calvin Harris's 'I created Disco'. It also reminds me a bit of The Ting Tings but musically and lyrically this album has the edge.
The synth's seem to me more like the sort of stuff that was on a lot of breakdance records, the vocals and lyrics are soulful, the raps original and quirky. I was blissfully unaware of the guest vocalists (e.g. Boy George) it doesn't seem so important and hasn't been hyped up (unlike projects such as Gorillaz phase 3).
All the differently styled tracks contribute to a cohesive whole with a catchy feel-good sometimes rave-ish disco vibe throughout and if I made such lists this one would be on my 'Top 10 Best Albums of 2010'. Seems to me like anyone in their late 30's who likes MOBO will love this album because of the subconcious associative 80's memory stimulations it will cause (e.g. Duran Duran) and anyone else will dig it as something different from the X-factory. As a final note to try and illustrate how good I feel this album is I am a huge fan of the Manic Street Preachers and I got their new album on the day of release, but as soon as I got this I haven't been listening to the manics album.
He's surrounded himself with superb guest musicians, notably Boy George and Simon Le Bon & Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran, but it's the slightly less well known Rose Elinor Dougall who impresses me the most. What a lovely voice.
There's not a trumpet to be found on it, and I have high hopes for the forthcoming Duran Duran album he's producing on the strength of this.
A must-buy in my books, the only downside I can see is that it will be neigh on impossible to play it live with all the original artists on the album!
I'd seen Mr Ronson on the likes of the Jonathan Ross show and his sharp look and cool persona made me want to both like him and his music. I really enjoyed the arrangements he did for Amy Winehouse's 'Back to Black' (who didn't?) and I rather relished the thought of further, similar examples with different artists. As always, the songs pushed as singles (or, are they download releases these days?) make one remind oneself to 'get that album' when heard.
If like me, you want to appreciate something bang-up-to-date AND really rather have something tuneful, soulful and well crafted then this is as hip as you're going to get.
The CD comes with a really colourful & stylish lyric booklet that bridges that gap between download and LP.
'You Gave Me Nothing' is one of my favourites, along with the Boy George sung 'Somebody to Love Me'. The keyboards of 'Glass Mountain Trust' are OMD-like and 'Record Collection' is a nicely Thomas Dolby sort of synthy pop, but better!
The fusion of these and much more modern styles (rap, hip-hop) with the almost 60's multi-vocal overdubbing on the wonderful 'The Night Last Night' that finishes things off that make this an interesting, colourful and generally very satisfying album.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not sure what or who got me into Mark Ronson but I'm glad it or they did. Love the overall sound of this album and there are many memorable catchy tracks with fantastic guest... Read morePublished 1 month ago by E. Doidge
Don't believe the hype. Ronson must have borrowed my old Todd Rungren/Steely Dan albums from the 70's and 80's to knock this one out. Not really good enough.Published 9 months ago by Hola Stevio
Only just started listening to Mark Ronson recently and I think this album is great. Really different to a lot of music you hear.Published 22 months ago by Susan Hanson