12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A genuinely great pop ballad with a touch of depth.,
This review is from: All Time Love [CD 2] [CD 2] (Audio CD)
All Time Love is further proof that the pop charts aren't always a dumping ground for bland singer/songwriters and karaoke covers, with Young and his team of musical associates putting together a gorgeous piece of wistful pop balladeering, with a lovely wash of pianos and a sweep of cinematic strings, all backed by some wonderful lyrics that sound truly heartfelt when delivered in that hushed, restrained whisper. It's a definite standout of the year so far for me, with Young managing to pull off a performance with more heart and conviction than anyone I can think of, and really, as a piece of great songwriting, it's head and shoulders above the more acclaimed like of Franz Ferdinand, the Kaiser chiefs, Bloc Party and the Arctic Monkeys.
I hate the snobbery at the heart of the UK music industry, which is apparent on both sides of the fence, with the pop-pickers frowning on anything that dares to be different, and the rock crowd slating anyone who dares to be different, or indeed, anyone who breaks away from the generic guitars/drums/bass/vocal template. All Time Love is a great song that works just as well when played solo on a acoustic guitar (maybe I should put out my own version?) and is really not that far removed from the style of the great 'I am a Bird Now' album by Anthony and the Johnsons that many hailed as the greatest release of 2005. Let's try to remember that even Scott Walker was an MOR performer of 60's pop standards before he evolved through the release of Scott IV, the Climate of Hunter and Tilt... and Young seems more than capable of moving in a direction far removed from the usual Pop Idol norm. Friday's Child had elements of jazz and funk and applied it to a pop format that worked, whilst the debut single from new album Keep On (entitled Switch It On), proved that Will wasn't afraid to baffle his core audience of mums and teenage girls.
All Time Love is a great pop ballad that has a touch of the early Scott about it and reminds me of The Divine Comedy, what with the understated piano and that gorgeous orchestration. The lyrics are nice too, and really work well when combined to the concept of the video. This is another reason to pick up the video/single release, with the video for All Time Love standing out as one of the most inspiring interpretations of a song that I've seen for some time, with the director tapping into the same world depicted in Bertolucci's The Dreamers (only here without the trite dialog and pretension) and offering something that (like Young's previous Top Gun aping clip) presents a genuinely subversive depiction of bisexuality. Added to that, there's the fantastic cinematography, the skilful editing and the symbiosis between the song and the visuals, the references to propaganda and the air revolution, and the idea of a rich girl slumming it eventually brining down the bohemians when she realises the man of her dreams would rather pontificate with his comrade in arms!!
All Time Love is proof that the Pop Idol crowd *can* (on occasion) get it right... with Young and his team pulling off a song that is really everything that Angels by Robbie Williams wasn't. The fact that the current Will Young album has proven to be less popular with his die-hard fans and more popular with supposedly serious critics perhaps implies that our Will isn't that far off releasing his own Scott IV/Happy Sad/Colour of Spring/TB Sheets style moment of pop transcendence. Well... perhaps?