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3.6 out of 5 stars
3.6 out of 5 stars
Brett Anderson
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 23 April 2007
People disparaging this album must have bought it thinking they would be hearing the Gorillaz or some other basic, "safe" indie rock endeavor by a former Brit-pop frontman. These people are one of the reasons Brett Anderson has never gotten the credit he so rightfully deserves.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is not simple pop music and this is certainly not Brit-pop. It isn't trendy. It is not tinged with hip-hop influence or with new wave dance beats and psudo-funky bass lines. Brett Anderson clearly doesn't care about fitting in with the current trends in rock music.

I believe this album really proves Brett Anderson is a great musician in his own right. This album has many of the elements that made the original Suede great. It is dark, moody and melodic. The string arrangement are beautiful and haunting. "The Infinite Kiss" is one of the best songs Brett Anderson has ever written. Though, I don't think every track is perfect, I believe this to have higher highs than the Tears managed to achieve. 6 of these tracks would've been stand-outs on Dog Man Star. Do yourself a favor and buy it.
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on 21 March 2007
i wasn't sure what to expect with this album as i'd read one great review in Uncut and one not so great one in OMM. if you are expecting a suede album in disguise your gonna be disappointed. however, i think this is a very strong album that gets you closer to Brett is about than any of his previous work. the tracks i like most are 'love is dead' , one lazy morning' and 'song for my father'...they are really uplifting in a nick drake kind of way. don't buy it if you want to rock out but if you want to hear brett's voice sounding better than it ever has and some heavy introspection then you may just like this.
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on 28 June 2017
A simply beautiful melancholic album, pure class.
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on 4 June 2007
A wonderful little gem of an album, with a lovely organic sound. It's not very Suede or Tears (though it does have a little flavour of Dog Man Star), but that's a good thing as it keeps things fresh & interesting.

I'm surprised at the ignorance of the other reviewers. Take 'Mr H', for example, who wrongly thinks Bernard Butler features on this album.

My fave tracks are 'Scorpio Rising' (makes the hairs on your neck stand on end), the romantic 'Infinite Kiss' & the lovely 'One Lazy Morning'.

Keep up the excellent work Brett.
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on 23 March 2007
"Nothing ever goes right / Nothing really flows in my life / No one really cares if no one ever shares my bed / People push by with fear in their eyes in my life / Love is dead" proclaims Anderson in a Morrissey-esque moan to kick off his self-titled debut solo album.'Love Is Dead', the first single, is a rare beast. Its a perfectly executed song that concisely sums up feelings of desperation and loneliness without any unnecessary verbosity. Heavy strings (courtesy of Dirty Pretty Strings) paired with Anderson's pained voice make a perfect melancholic partnership. Its the type of song that rarely comes around and is without doubt a real gem of the album.

This release has been keenly anticipated by every Suede and The Tears fan for nearly 2 years (me not being one of them). Co written with Fred Ball (whose main project is electro-pop act 'Pleasure') the first half sets its stall out to be a relatively upbeat and exquisitely melodic collection of pop/rock songs, but this disguises a very haunting second half to the album. Its like going from a warm and sunny Saturday morning driving through the countryside straight into a lonely Friday night sat in a torrential downpour waiting for the night bus. Lines like "Summer's gone... I've lost my love to the winter", "Your love's like an overdose, with your hands wrapped around my throat... I am the needle you are the vein", "Carve your name into my uglyness", "My love she hides a cruel disease" exhibit a desperate depressive introspection that cannot fail to transform a content listener into a quivering wreck. But its this immense power that makes this album so special. "No guests, no gimmicks, just me and the music" says Anderson. I do get the sense that he is telling no lies on this project, it is his most honest and vulnerable work to date. It does give the listener a glimpse into the inner workings of a man who has been so influential in British guitar-based music since the early 90's. Whilst this album will undoubtedly satisfy any die-hard Anderson fanatic, if given chance, it would also be right up the street of anyone who likes their rock music with a twist of haunting melancholy. Drowned in strings and deep melody, the arrangements float graciously and the lyrical content is at times as heavy as an anvil which can both crush you and leave you humbled at its descriptive and narrative quality. Anderson's lyrical themes, terminology and phrasing have always bared a strong resemblance to that of the great Morrissey - whom he has always admitted forms a major influence. Compared to the lyrical content in much of Suede's material, Anderson's style as a solo artist delivers the message without ambiguity but in an equally vivid and blunt manner. However, its not all about lost or unrequited love as the subject matter takes 'stabs' at modern consumerism ("The more we possess, the less we own of ourselves"), questions god and religion (One Lazy Morning) and finishes with the very emotional 5 minute "Song For My Father" which is clearly about the recent passing of Anderson's own father. (If you can manage to make it past the first two minutes of the track without shedding a tear, you are officially emotionally dead.)

It is a mature piece of work. So mature in fact that it runs the risk that a lot of its expected audience will be too immature to fully appreciate it. Keep this album close to hand for a break-up, depressive streak, wind/rain/thunder, long train journeys on a sunday afternoon with a hangover or diagnosis of a terminal illness... its music that will turn the sun black and leave you gasping for air - but once you've come back up - it will have left a permanent mark on you that will keep you coming back.
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on 9 June 2007
Its such a shame that most of the negative reviews have come from die hard Suede fans lamenting that Suede are no longer together. In my opinion Brett Anderson deserves bit more respect from his hard core fans, because to ignore this album would be a crime.

As a massive music fan with a very eclectic taste Suede somehow passed me by, ( I was living in the Seychelles from 92-97, which might explain it?) so when i got hold of this album, i listened to it as a stand alone artist with no previous other than the excellent Tears project, and boy what a talented man Brett Anderson is. This album has absolutely blown me away, for its the album of the year so far. To be fair you need to give it a few spins, some songs will get hold of you straight away others take a few plays, but the album is more the better for it, as i think you are less likely to get tired of it.

The Opening track "Love is Dead" is probably pretty familiar to most as its the single and i assume getting some radio play in the UK and Europe. By the way on the B side on one of the versions of Love is Dead is a great track called "Clocks" which should have been on the album. The second track is one of my favourites on the album,"One Lazy Morning" which just has some of the best lyrics I have heard in ages. Two more excellent tracks in "Dust and Rain" and "Intimicy" pass before "To the Winter" which is a great example of how to tell a Love story in a song, certianly this is an easy one to like pretty much from the off. "Scorpio Rising" and "The Infinite Kiss" just keep building the album up, and you are waiting for it to let you down, but it doesnt, far from it. Two more brilliant tracks in "Colour of the Night" ( i would like to know where the inspiration for that song came from) and "The more we possess the less we own of ourselves" which is a very clever song about living beyond your means. The album finishes on fine form with "Ebony" and "Song for my father".

This is clever work, and Brett nderson is supported by a tight and talented band and if Mr Anderson continues to produce work to this calibre I for one will be very happy indeed.

I have enjoyed this album so much I have now ordered the Suede back catalogue to see what all the fuss is about, and have just bought tickets to see Brett in concert in Hong Kong in August and I cant wait.

One last thing, if you go to Brett Anderson's my space page and look at the downloads, for 79p you can get a brilliant live version of "Clocks" which is different to the B side, and is just stunning.

Go on buy it...it really is that good.
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VINE VOICEon 25 May 2007
I really wanted to like this album. Suede stuck out of the Britpop crowd as obviously as early Roxy Music outclassed the glam majority. But having made two perfect albums, the transitional Coming Up saw them begin to slip sadly into the mediocrity of Head Music and A New Morning.

Frontman Anderson and guitarist Bernard Butler had always formed a troubled partnership, but the best of their songs had expressed a wounded romanticism which has seldom since been equalled. On his own, though, Anderson struggled to find a sufficiently dramatic setting for his shabby vignettes of urban life. What had been Wildean romance dwindled into drabness,

Much was expected of the Anderson/Butler partnership when it was briefly reunited for Here Come the Tears in 2005, but the album failed to make much of an impression. Perhaps the magic had leaked away, or perhaps it was the times that had moved on: in any case, Anderson has decided to collaborate with Norwegian writer/producer Fred Ball for this solo outing.

Going for the Scott Walker/Nico aesthetic of strings and muddy piano, these eleven tracks nevertheless sound oddly perfunctory. The arrangements don't do enough to lift the often fragile melodies and there's little sense of sonic variation. The familiar lyrical landscape of city streets, dirty love and desperate addiction is all still there, but although he's lying in the gutter, there's no sense that Anderson is still looking at the stars.

Lead-off single Love Is Dead doesn't so much brood as whinge. Self-pity is a major keynote on this album, but it's not the kind of suffering that ennobles or brings wisdom in its wake. Dust And Rain ("I am the needle and you are the vein") is the kind of drug/dependency song Placebo handle with far more richness and compassion, and The Infinite Kiss is a depressing dirge with little emotional light and shade.

Frustratingly, there are moments when we get a glimpse of the poignancy and wistful drama of which Anderson was once capable. The solo-penned Scorpio Rising drapes delicate guitar over the melody like a shawl, and The More We Possess the Less We Own Of Ourselves is a kind of oom-pa-pa Viennese waltz, an intriguing counterpoint for a song about death-by-consumerism.

An album this patchy would be excusable as a debut from some bright young hope, but coming from an artist of Anderson's experience, it looks like a sad case of creative drought.
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on 24 March 2007
A lot of people have been waiting a long time for this album. If you wanted Brett's solo debut to be another Suede-y indie/NME record, this album will disappoint you. This is a complete departure from Suede and its very very good! Brett has grown up and moved on. This is his first album as a mature artist and both lyrically and musically it has a depth which I've personally never seen or heard in his work. The album has got a very strong and dark mood and its a real grower. Its a proper album's album.... Its fantastic!!!
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 30 June 2007
Some three years after Suede's untimely demise, and two from the slightly boring debut by The Tears, Brett Anderson breaks out with his first solo album.

And it's the best thing he's done in years. Not to denigrate unfairly his previous work, but Suede's final album was, in retrospect, the unconvincing "A New Morning", and "Here Come The Tears" was the sound of two men trying, and failing, to capture decade old past glories : both looked to the past whilst trying to be of the future.

"Brett Anderson" creates a new, and wonderful niche. The trademarks of the past, the hoi polloi lyrics about gasoline and concrete skies and atomic winters, the semi glam rock stomps, are all firmly consigned to the dustbin of history. Instead, this debut carves a new, mature, unafraid vision.

Taking it's cue from the torch song LP's of the late Sixties (right down to the portrait of the artist in his living room), this debut is the sound of someone stepping out of their own, self-made prison of parody, and reinventing themselves. In these songs, Brett is the windswept, longcoated semi-tragic antihero of widescreen failed romances. Lead off single, the fabulous "Love Is Dead" is an anthem to the very malaise of modern life, held up - as all the album is - by vast and tender string arrangements. The fragile melody stubbornly walks on, as if somehow battling a snowstorm of hope crushed under the boots of a generally uncaring world. Piano notes exist in a brittle moment where it seems that love could be real, and yet it is also dead. The contradiction of hope.

"One Lazy Morning" sounds just like the title : built on a rolling, hypnotic motif, it ebbs and flows under lyrics about nothing and something. "Dust And Rain" is the nearest thing to his previous work, resembling a brutal, hard edged, abrasive interpretation of something from the final Suede album - as does, to a latter extent "Intimacy" which is almost a plea for the same.

What is refreshing is how Brett has abandoned his lyrical shorthand of the past that made him so easy to parody. Instead of reverting to type, he has tried something new. The words - with the exception of the third person lecture of "The More We Own The Less We Have Of Ourselves" - are raw, personal, and above all, reflect a verisimilitude of honesty that has been concealed in the past through creative pigeonholing. "To the Winter", like much of the rest of the album, is built of torch songs the like of which even Leonard Cohen has never seen. The language of these songs, even the non-lingual vocal stylings, communicate more than some bands entire careers. As if sometimes, mere language were not enough. And if language were enough, we wouldn't need music in our lives.

"Brett Anderson", despite it's prosaic title, is about the driving force that makes men men and women women. The lure and the impossible shapes of love, about the way desire turns people inside out, and about the windswept, rainpelted hope of human beings. An early contender for album of the year.
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on 28 March 2007
As Suede's star failed through the nineties, and we were left without our heroes, it was with grave misgivings I approached this, especially after 'The Tears, especially after giving the single one star. I was wrong, but only in that I now realise Brett Anderson isn't Suede. If you compare anything to early Suede, it disappoints, so I didn't bother. As a result, this is really a rather good album. Why does the press hate Brett Anderson: Jarvis Cocker and Damon Albarn are regularly held up as icons of Britpop and their subsequent musical incarnations are heralded as works of genius. Brett Anderson is being written out of history, this album could have been Dog Man Star and everyone would have still hated it. It's not awful, just awfully different, but still Brett Anderson. He's ten years older now, and the music shows us this. If you're still doing the things you were doing ten years ago, hey, move on, the rest of us, Brett Anderson included, have. It [this album] gets inside you, it's subtle, you hum parts when you least expect it. I'm certainly playing it more than 'Jarvis'. Read the positive reviews above and, doubtlessly, below, others express their sentiments which I share with far greater eloquence than I. I just want to say 'try this'. You will either love it or hate it.
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