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This review is from: Life Is People (Audio CD)
I'm peeved - I bought this CD because I read a couple of five star reviews that made me think that Britain's own Bob Dylan (sorry, Donovan, close but no cigar) has been languishing undiscovered for decades before triumphantly re-emerging with the help of some established stars. And because I like Wilco.
Briefly, I was disappointed. The music itself is fine, as you might expect with the calibre of some of the backing artistes. The singing is, frankly, strained, but adequate.
In a fair and kind world the lyrics wouldn't be discussed, but even though I am flushed with post-Olympics bonhomie, I think prospective buyers should be warned that those of a delicate and discerning nature may be reduced to apoplexy by their trite nature. Aiming at a combination of heartfelt emotion and homespun wisdom, they achieve only a turgid mix of sentimentality and platitudes ("Like my old Dad said, Life is people" - says it all, really) which did indeed raise strong emotions in me, but none of them were the intended ones.
Worth avoiding unless you are curious about what all the fuss is, and have a few bob to spare.
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 30 Aug 2012 11:19:50 BDT
Last edited by the author on 30 Aug 2012 20:10:03 BDT
I bought this album on the back of great reviews in Uncut and Mojo and I also listened to a few tracks on YouTube. Yes the lyrics are a little bit sentimental at times, although never in a mawkish way, but I can forgive that after reading about his life story and his outlook on life. It's also led me to seek out his much earlier albums, which are quite different in terms of production values and instrumentation as they have a bit of a rawer, rougher edge than on 'Life is People' as it is possibly a little over produced in places. It features musicians who although they are at the height of their powers means that it sometimes slightly compares unfavourably with the heartfelt rawness of Fay's earlier works where the players were still honing their craft. (I find this applies to a lot of artists where their earlier albums are often but not always more interesting than their later output). However I can again forgive this because I find it a deeply spiritual album made by someone who has suffered the vicissitudes of the music industry with good grace and its a blast of fresh air when compared against the vacous output of the X Factor and The Voice. Going back to the lyrics I agree that they are not overly complex but nor are they trite; their simplicity is in fact what gives them their power and I for one cannot stop playing this album at the moment.
Posted on 26 Sep 2012 12:51:46 BDT
Ian Tandy says:
I could not disagree with you more. The tunes are wonderful and the singing full of emotion. How would you describe the singing on Bob Dylan's new album? Strained? The lyrics are intelligent and I really cannot understand how anyone can think they are trite! The best album released in 2012 by a country mile.
In reply to an earlier post on 14 Jan 2013 23:00:22 GMT
Simon Turner says:
Yes, I'd agree with the judgement that the lyrics as trite. And the music is overdone and overproduced as if he were a real talent who'd passed away (like Townes van Zandt, say) and this stuff had been stuck on after by session musicians. Oh, and the Dexys album One Day I'm Going to Soar was the album of the year!
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