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on 13 September 2001
To follow the multi-platinum success of the Stanley Road album, Weller strips back the production and takes his groove ridden angst to another new place. No compromise for chart action here.
It's rumoured he was wrestling with personal demons while making the album and with the angry guitar slashes and impassioned vocals of the opening eponymous track and the rocking single "Peacock Suit", you can feel it. They really bristle with energy and vibes.
In much the same way as his towering stage presence, a lot of Weller's recorded work has an astonishing physicality. His songs seem to squirm and push at the edges with real dynamic force.
However the standout Track on Heavy Soul is "Up In Suze's Room", a smokey, hazy accoustic lope of a song which sees the protagonist getting wasted with his new love and loving it. Achingly fabulous.
By this artist's impeccably high standards though, there are a couple of songs which don't really come across to the listener: "Heavy Soul II" is infuriatingly faded in as a stand alone instrumental. "Brushed" has a great voodoo groove and more of that sinewy dynamism but is never as exciting as the first four bars promise. "As You Lean Into The Light" lacks the warmth of Weller's usual sincerity and he sounds detatched and maudlin.
Still, a fascinating album by this finest of singer songwriters and a worthy companion to this year's standout "Heliocentric" collection.
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on 21 October 2005
....and I just can't get bored with it. An exellent album from Paul Weller. As usual an eclectic range of excellent songs from a very underrated performer. This man has got soul. He can get you rocking along with him one moment and then touch you with the sincerity of a wonderful ballad. He displays how he is influenced by many types of music - rock, soul, dub reggae,mod. Buy and enjoy for years.
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on 4 June 2008
I've been best mates with my best mate(dur!...obviously!) for over 25 years. He got this album before me, and when he remarked to me that it was "obvious filler", we fell out, and he had to buy me several pints before I would speak to him again.

I really like it. It oozes class. Right from the opening riffs of Heavy Soul Part I through to Friday Street. The tracks that will live forever are obvious...Peacock Suit, Brushed and Friday Street, but there are other unforgettable songs in between, too.

Who else gives you a dozen anthems every time you buy one of his albums?
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on 10 May 2010
I really don't get people's downer on this album. I really love it and find it sits beautifully alongside Paul's debut (which was itself royally put down for many years), Wildwood and Stanley Road. Real music, depth, and really warm sounds that I've loved ever since I first heard it.
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on 28 June 2010
Have been a big fan of Paul Weller for years, but realised I didn't have all his albums, so decided to start a collection (will be seeing him in December in concert)

Loved this album, every one of his albums is different, but this was definitely more "soulful" than some of his others, and would highly recommend it.
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on 5 January 2016
This album has some cracking tracks the aim was for weller to make a uncommercial record or so the rumour was still a great album.
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on 25 August 2006
Following on from the heady success of "Stanley Road", this album struck something of a sour note.

From the muddy opening chords of the title track to the heady rush of "Brushed", the well-rounded quality of "Stanley Road" seemed to be broken off leaving rougher edges.

The opening four tunes are of sound quality. "Up In Suze's Room" bringing a summery breeze to the heavier songs either side of it.

Where it starts to fall apart is on tracks like "Driving Nowhere" and "Golden Sands" - barely B-sides. Quality control issues or writer's block seemed to be an issue here for a songwriter of such stature to include these half-songs on an album. The same is true of "As You Lean Into The Light" which has potential to travel then grinds to a halt.

More impressive is the sharp "Science" and charming "Mermaids."

The smoky, apologetic ballad - "I Should Have Been There To Inspire You" - is an overlooked classic.

The sound is at time abrasive and a little discordant. There are some nuggets of tracks on here but as an album there's a handful of songs on here that don't cut the mustard and for an artist of Paul Weller's talent and stature it's reasonable to expect more.
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on 24 April 2014
I recently purchased this item and found it amazing I am a great Paul Weller fan so I would recommend this
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on 5 January 2013
Excellent, I`ve got to put another 14 words in but I`ve said it in a nut shell excellent love it.
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Great album, not as good as wild wood but very good still!
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