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Well before Franz Ferdinand and their ilk brought dance-rock back into vogue in the 2000s, Primal Scream were melding hip-shaking electronic grooves and guitar-heavy riffs as early as 1991's SCREAMADELIA. 2008's BEAUTIFUL FUTURE proves this long-standing Britpop outfit is still mining the fusion to good effect. Rousing, uptempo jams like "Uptown" and the sprightly, singalong title track are strong examples of Primal Scream's talent for pop-minded dance tunes that still manage to rattle amps. Yet there's plenty of variety too--from swirling psychedelia to dark, churning blues. Guest spots from Linda Thompson and Lovefoxxx from CSS help keep BEAUTIFUL FUTURE intriguing front to back.
Beautiful Future--a hopelessly optimistic moniker for their ninth album, no matter which way you approach it, since Primal Scream are almost universally accepted to have strutted past their zenith around the same time they helpfully mislaid their vowels (on 2000s unrelentingly anarchic Xtrmntr). To claim any future, especially after the all-too-brief successes of 2006s turgid Riot City Blues, let alone a handsome one is foolhardy to say the least. But, you see, theyre actually being cuttingly sarcastic, or so we ascertain from Bobby Gillespies ham-fisted sloganeering on the title tracks tirade against modern ills ("you live by the sword, you die by the sword, youre only free to buy things you cant afford", etc.). If anything in particular is exposed as a spent force here it is he and his pen, sense disregarded to the point of parody, words drifting like flotsam amid the bands systematic attempts to reinvent themselves. The small miracle is that they just about manage. "Beautiful Future" leads into the album with a curious and eventually overwhelming infectiousness, gleaming like CSS delivering a Shirelles pastiche complete with cheesy bell-ringing and an effeminate vocal delivery that almost clouds over the lyrical content. "I Love to Hurt (You Love to Be Hurt)" actually features CSSs Lovefoxx as this albums Kate Moss and holds its own with some minimalist malevolence. As an album it jerks and it stumbles, lacking a definitive identity, but it at least ensures theyll live to see another day. A future of some sort is assured. --James BerrySee all Product description
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In fact, when the opening, title track starts, complete with chiming bells, bouncy beat and radio-friendly sing-a-long chorus, you wonder if they're joking but, as it turns out, they're not - they're serious and, quite honestly, it's seriously good. The single 'Can't Go Back' is a raucous piece of brilliance which, along with the menacing 'Suicide Bomb' and the brilliant Josh Homme collaboration 'Necro Hex Blues', provide the edge and character which makes the album distinctively Primal Scream, but the album is equally as good for songs such as the mellow, chilled out 'Uptown' and the understated but catchy 'Glory Of Love'. There's even a quietly superb break-up ballad, a cover of Fleetwood Mac's 'Over & Over' featuring Linda Thompson. Not everything on 'Beautiful Future' is exactly fantastic, in fact there is a distinct mid-album lull, but it's all very listenable and, on the whole, a very good album.
Leave your pre-conceptions and reservations behind - Primal Scream have made an album to be enjoyed, so just buy it with an open mind, play it, go with the flow and enjoy it but, be warned, if you want anything similar to 'XTRMNTR' or 'Evil Heat', you're likely to be very disappointed.
The many uptempo tracks really hit the spot and the slowest Over & Over is really excellent.
Looking forward to seeing many of these tracks, along with some old classics, played live on the upcoming tour.
I suggest anyone who liked any Primal Scream album should buy it, give it a few listens, and make up your own mind as many of the reviews, I believe, are misleading.
I miss everything that this band ever stood for - and I say this with about 13 or so years hindsight: there`s no urgency here, no irony, nothing...not even real sleaze...it`s simply utterly boring.
in a nutshell, primal scream have obviously run out of ideas: this might well be their last shot at chart success - and the scream`s motivation for targeting the kiddie market. mark my words, it`s not gonna work.
therefore, avoid this one like the pest; and hope for better days...maybe.
beautiful future? not.
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