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Blue is the Colour: Beautiful South - A colourful album from a great band
on 13 May 2011
This fifth album outing for Hull's greatest musical export, the Beautiful South, marks a slight shift in the band's sound. Still keeping the cynical, sarcastic lyrics with trademark jazzy arrangements, there are slower numbers here, along with some very big issues being tackled, and a few tracks which sound like they were recorded with the aim of producing a commercial hit single.
Overall the quality is excellent. The slow burning songs work well. The faster tempo tracks, such as Rotterdam reveal the usual playful, sarcastic voice of the band. Religion is tackled in the amusing `One God'. The best track of all though is the all conquering `Liar's Bar', one of the greatest tracks ever recorded by the band. Paul Heaton uses an unusually low and gruff register to tell the tale of a dedicated bar fly. It shows what a great singer he is, as well as displaying his unique song writing ability.
All in all a classic album. Perhaps not as boundary pushing as their earlier work, with a slightly more commercial edge, but a bona fide classic nonetheless.