Top positive review
5 people found this helpful
Great return of a living legend!
on 14 November 2005
“As Is Now” is something like a statement of how the things are going to be done by Paul Weller. The future seems to be good, The Modfather and his band (White, Minchella and Cradock) returns with this album. It has the classic Weller style, but it sounds fresh. Again, Jan “Stan” Kybert is the producer, so from that point of view this album is very linked to “Illumination” (2003). But the reminiscences of “Wild Wood” or “Stanley Road” and the earlier Weller are present.
The first two singles “From The Floor Boards Up” and “Come On/Let’s Go” are really good. “From The Floor...” reminds me of “Vertigo” by U2...that kind of song is this one!, 2 minutes and 27 seconds of frantic rock and roll!. When U2 released that song many people said that the band returned to their “Boy” (1980) days, well...as someone said here too, Weller returned in some way to his days with The Jam.
But since the very start the album catches you. “Blink And You’ll Miss It” opens with a classic riff by Steve Cradock (Ocean Colour Scene) who has been playing with Weller for more than 10 years and has reached his maturity as a lead guitarist. “Paper Smile” is a song that could’ve been included in “Stanley Road” (1995), very similar to the self titled song on that album. “Savages” takes some of those days too, it’s one of the highlights on “As Is Now”, as a fact, it could be a single with no doubt.
Another good song is “Here’s The Good News”. A pop song with Weller on the piano and some horns behind; the Small Faces and the Beatles influences are there. In the same line is “I Wanna Make It Alright”. “Fly Little Bird” is an acoustic track with touches of Neil Young but it could have been arranged by McCartney too.
“All On A Misty Morning” is one of my favourites from this record. It starts with an acoustic guitar, almost a spanish one and unleashes a very rhythmic song with an easy to remind chorus. “Bring Back The Funk” is the funky (Obviously!) song from the album. The whole band pays a homage to the sound developed by some artists like Nile Rodgers (Chic) in the 70’s.
In general, it’s a great collection of songs. I think this album is better than “Heliocentric”, “Illumination”...even better than “Heavy Soul”...maybe I’m wrong, but I found this one a great buying. It didn’t disappoint me. We have Paul Weller for the future!