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I'm Having Fun Now
 
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I'm Having Fun Now

5 July 2011 | Format: MP3

8.09 (VAT included if applicable)
Buy the CD album for 10.62 and get the MP3 version for FREE. Does not apply to gift orders.
Provided by Amazon EU Srl. See Terms and Conditions for important information about costs that may apply for the MP3 version in case of returns and cancellations. Complete your purchase of the CD album to save the MP3 version to your Amazon music library.
Song Title
Time
Popularity  
30
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2:58
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3:37
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3
3:35
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3:53
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2:23
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3:40
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2:39
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4:14
30
9
3:51
30
10
2:13
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11
2:44
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Format: Audio CD
There is no doubt that whatever Jenny Lewis turns he hand to, she is pretty damn good at it. Her previous solo work and the albums that she released with Rilo Kiley are all excellent offerings, each different from the others. That's why I was so keen to sample her new record in collaboration with Johnathan Rice. I wanted to know what direction she was headed in and how it sat with her other releases.

So, what is the verdict? This is a good album and for large chunks of it, Lewis is at her very best. There is no doubt that she drives it and there are elements of me that feel that Rice is almost hanging onto her coat tails. I have Johnathan Rice's first solo release from around 2005 and whilst it is a reasonable album, it is nowhere near on par with the calibre of work Lewis has been putting out through the years. It strikes me that this combination kind of suits him as vehicle to get himself in the limelight. I'm sure we'll find out from the forthcoming live shows scheduled in the US....

In terms of the album itself, I was slightly surprised, although not disappointed, with the nature of the material. Lewis' solo work to date has been a lot more stripped back and rootsy than the style of songs she put out with Rilo Kiley. Her previous release, Acid Tongue, seemed to confirm the direction that she was headed in and she even stated herself in interviews that she liked the freedom she had with her solo projects compared to the band scenario. However, for my money, large parts of this album return to where she was with Rilo Kiley....Americana / alt country with some songs taking on more of a pop feel.

Does it work? To an extent, yes. If this is the direction she was headed back in, however, I feel she would have been better doing it with Rilo Kiley.
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Format: MP3 Download
Jenny Lewis has always worked well whilst in collaboration mode. `I'm Having Fun Now' is no exception to this general rule, with Lewis effectively working with boyfriend and touring partner Johnathan Rice on this brilliant record.

Scissor Runner kicks things off, a bright and breezy opener which ends kicking and screaming. Once again, Lewis and Rice manage to write some exceptional lyrics, with Switchblade and Big Wave really standing out here, the latter reflecting on the recessions affect in California. Elsewhere on the album, While Men Are Dreaming could easily have come out of a Execution Of All Things session, whilst Slavedriver deals with S&M and Straight Edge of the Blade cool-ly tackles sexuality. Committed, a favourite live opener, ends the album with quirky and quick-fire lyrics, ending an eleven track storm of an album in style.

Overall, this album stands remarkably well with Jenny Lewis' other records, mainly because it is something completely different to all her other work. As the duo stated before the release of the album, this record was never meant to be a Jenny Lewis or a Johnathan Rice record, but a Jenny and Johnny record. This is certainly the case, and `I'm Having Fun Now' is both an original and frankly, brilliant album and certainly some of the best music to come out of California in recent years.

Jenny and Johnny are currently embarking on an unusually large UK tour, so go and see them. The new songs come off very well live (particularly Slavedriver and Big Wave) and their sets include both Johnathan Rice songs (End of the Affair) and Lewis classics (Carpetbaggers). Go and see them and have some fun!
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Format: Audio CD
There is no doubt that Jenny Lewis has some serious talent. Her angelic twang breathes life into the most prosaic of songs which is a good job here. That is not to say that this is a horrible album. Far from it, there are some great tracks that illuminate I'm Having Fun Now. However, much of the album is predictable and some of the tracks where Jonathan Rice takes the lead are a tad prosaic.

There are some gems here though. Scissor Runner and My Pet Snakes are an energetic and fun start to proceedings, much like Big Wave which has obvious pop sensibilities reminiscent of Britpop at it's most retro. In fact most of the tracks amount to little more than postcards from Teddy Boy era America with tinges of contemporary indie sentiment. To be fair, the lyrics are often wryly nostalgic rather than cloyingly sentimental. Still, the overall mood is one of lightweight, foot-tapping enjoyment.

Two things lift this album above the ordinary though. Firstly, whilst Lewis, only sporadically on lead vocals, is excellent, the backing vocals (provided by either protagonist) are often innovative and imaginatively applied. They add layers to songs that would otherwise struggle to live long in the memory. Secondly, on the two tracks that they slow the tempo down, Switchblade and Slavedriver, they manage to slip into much more evocative territory with swirling atmosphere and oodles of pathos through bittersweet lyrics. They are both masterpieces of ambient indie pop.

All in all, this will certainly provide the listener with a sometimes poignant, sometimes frenetic listen but it will probably not go down as one of Jenny Lewis' best efforts.
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