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Poetry In Motion
on 5 February 2014
Maximo Park's fifth album Too Much Information is now out on release.Originally an EP,it was decided by the band that their songs were good enough to use on a full length album. The album is a riveting piece of work and is warmly welcomed by the band's fans old,new and embryonic.
"Give,Get,Take",the first track,is a sensuous teasing song made all the more intriguing by the words "I'd forgive you anything -you are a direct inspiration,"as,in the CD's credit,leadman Paul Smith's entry "Love to Becca-you are a direct inspiration",has the listener wondering if there's a romantic connection between Becca and the love interest in "Give,Get,Take".
But I digress. Too Much Information has a poppy,upbeat feel to most of the songs,but is rescued from too much mainstream information by tracks such as the subterranean"Brain Cells" and the Jonathan Richmanesque"My Bloody Mind".
Well-produced by the band themselves and engineered by David Brewis(Field Music),Duncan Lloyd and Lukas Wooller from Maximo Park,this album is a rich mix of words and music which holds the listener's ear immediately.
It's a newish direction for the band,but thankfully that old mysterious magic that they still retain secretes itself through this album's music.
The best and most "connected" track is,in my opinion,"Leave This Island".The tune is exceptional,the instrumental backing is tight and unflawed,and the steady drumbeat (Tom English)shows how Maximo Park,at their best,can be on top of their game.
A chart success?I'm really hoping so,with this song.
"Drinking Martinis"is rather a lovely song-a sad tale of romantic loss...and "Midnight On The Hill" is another poetically-worded track with a strong backbeat."Her Name Was Audre"is a rocking tribute to black poetess Audre Lorde,perhaps not a literary figure known by everybody,but nonetheless worth singing about.
The last track "Where We're Going" has singer Paul Smith in very good voice;it's a ballad-style song with beautiful backing vocals from MP's Duncan Lloyd.
The bonus CD of cover songs is also worth hearing.I particularly liked "Northern Sky" and "I'll Be Here In The Morning",by Nick Drake and Townes Van Zandt respectively.Both very beautiful,poignant songs.
TMI is an album which appears superficial on first hearing,but in fact has many layers to it. In some ways,it's a little more heavy-going than MP's previous four albums,but that's not to criticize.Suffice it to say that MP's followers will recognize it as another triumph for the band and for their fans.