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4.3 out of 5 stars
16
4.3 out of 5 stars
Everything Is New
Format: Audio CD|Change
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 28 May 2015
I personally really enjoyed Jack Peñate's debut album, Matinee, and still consider it an excellent, quirky indie-rock record. His more polished-sounding second album, released two years later in 2009, is very different, and we hear a more 'grown up' and sophisticated young man. The title, 'Everything is New' just says it all. If you enjoy the experimental sound of Vampire Weekend, you'll like what you get here.

Electronic, dance-pop music is generally my cup of tea, but most of these songs, all of which are self-written, are irresistible, with the sound never drowning out Jack's rich, soulful voice. Get me on the dance floor! The hit singles 'Be the One' and 'Tonight's Today' are very catchy, and 'Pull My Heart Away' is peaceful, and equally as addictive. If the happy and upbeat party anthem 'So Near' doesn't make you feel good, I don't know what will. In fact, the only song here that I don't really care for is the title track. Like it's predecessor (which I still personally favour), 'Everything Is New' contains a song with the then unknown singer Adele on background vocals, 'Every Glance'.

A perfect album for Summer. Now, 2009 was six years ago, and there hasn't been any new release from Jack Peñate since, I just hope that 'Everything is New' wasn't his last record forever.
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on 20 July 2009
I don't review on Amazon very often but this album is something worth writing about. My previous opinion of Penate, I confess, was ambivolent at best.

The aptly titled 'Everything Is New' brings something completely different to the table. It's hard to believe it comes from the imagination of the same person who bored me to death two years ago with yawning mockney acoustic pop blah.

The album opens with the ethereal, pounding "Pull My Heart Away", which perfectly sets the tone for the delights to come. This, along with many of the following tracks is a very heart on sleeve account of making a fresh start and taking chances.

The religious allusions on 'Be The One' are also a recurring theme. Again, there is a throbbing beat and fantastic instrumentation that just has you hooked from the outset. Even the catchy break towards the end of the track gives it stand-out appeal.

Tonight's Today, which has a heady, almost tribal undercurrent, is inspired by Penate's all night partying. I read one interview where he said he'd been out for so long he saw a clock with 4 on the dial and had no idea whether it was 4am or 4pm.

The Balearic beats and catchy hooks continue with the title track, Everything Is New. The melting hawaiian guitar, hand claps and harmonies meld together perfectly. "Dance Away Defeat..." Penate joyously wails, and you can't help but move along with the rhythm. It conjours images of sweaty South American beach parties under the setting sun.

So Near combines happy clappy with techno beats and twinkly guitars and gets better with every listen.

The pace slows for Every Glance, (with Adele backing). Again, Penate's sighing vocals are given plenty of sultry echo and depth. Every Glance is one of the more lyrically sucessful tracks on the album and gives a clear idea of Penate's not-quite-fully-realised potential as a songwriter.

The pace picks up again for the toe-tapping Give Yourself Away, where Penate almost yells "I dare you to do it" to a sexy, Brazilian rumba-esque backing track.

Lets All Die is a chirpy little number but the rather transparent lyrics and weak structure let it down slightly. Epworth's influence redeams it, though, with shouty backing vocals and lots of noisy guitars to add interest.

Body Down, the closing track, is a departure from the rest of the album, although it has the same depth and hypnotic quality. It reminds me of a Victorian nursery rhyme set to a slightly fuzzy piano, and the crashing symbols and sudden key changes give it a haunting and mellifluous appeal.

This could have been a car crash album and must have felt like a huge risk for Penate. He couldn't possibly have pulled it off better, though, as every track is completely infused with his new-found sense of bravery and adventure.

This is a fantastic second album, full of enigmatic, exuberant, uninhibited tracks.
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on 10 July 2009
Saw jp at glasto on the beeb and liked what i saw, got the album and its 9 quality tunes. Normally a dance/electronica man myself, but this is the best album ive purchased in ages.
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VINE VOICEon 24 July 2009
I'd never heard of Jack Penate, but accidently caught some of his set in the John Peel tent at Glastonbury (on the Beeb! :) )and he seemed pretty good.

I bought his first CD and it's a pretty good album, but this one is something else altogether.

The tracks are distinctive and fresh (these are the tracks I remember from the Glasto set), with many influences but managing to sound different rather than another 'me too' indie artist.

Refreshing too, in that there are only 9 tracks, but all deserve inclusion, no pad the CD out filler dross here. I used to feel a CD with less than 14 tracks was poor value, but nowadays I'd rather have 9 good tracks than 7 good, 4 so-so and 3 duffers.

One of the best CDs I've bought in a while (actually set of MP3s as it was, unusually, cheaper to buy the MP3s than a second hand copy of the CD) - Amazon's MP3 Downloader worked very well for me too.
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VINE VOICEon 31 January 2010
This was one of the best albums of 09, and its sad it was all but overlooked in the end of year lists. This is funky, soulful, and much of it sounds like it was recorded in the house that Lionel Richie was dancing on the ceiling of. Great production by Epworth and great tracks, Pull My Heart Away a particular fave. Hope for more of this quality, or of course better, very soon from Penate.
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on 2 April 2015
One of my favourite albums. Absolutely love this. Remember hearing Tonight's Today on the radio back in 2009 and had to get the album. Have listened to this album so many times and it always sounds good. Takes me back to 2009 such a great year for music and myself. Not many people know this but Adele provides backing vocals on the track 'Every Glance'. It's been almost 6 years since he released this and hasn't brought out an album since, except for the odd song. This album will hard to top.
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on 16 July 2009
Heard some of JP's previous work in passing, wasn't really impressed. This is a massive re-invention - don't know if he's made a pact with the devil or something, but this album is ace. I would've given it 4.5 stars if I could, couldn't quite give it 5.

There isn't a bad track, and most of them are great (there's only 9 mind). The first track reminded me of The Cure.

That is all
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on 19 June 2009
I have listened to a preview copy of this album. I can't say I was ever a fan of Penate's last album. It was a bit rubbish, frankly, The kind of mass-market landfill that's here today, gone tomorrow. Between 2007 and 2009, Penate has undergone something of a radical reinvention. Everything IS New, indeed.

This record is nine songs of wide-eyed pure musical joy mixing up a huge array of sounds you don't hear on your average pop LP: African rhythms, Ibiza beats, fuzzy guitars, samples, choirs ... It has clearly been inspired by Vampire Weekend - and it's none the worse for it.
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on 5 October 2010
I was really looking forward to listening to this as enjoyed watching Jack live at Glastonbury. However apart from the 1st 2 tracks which i think have been singles the other tracks are frankly pretty dreadful. If i could ask for a refund I would. Sorry Jack.
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on 3 May 2013
I really, really liked the first album and after reading a few reviews on here thought I might be disappointed by this. Not so. A good follow uo with a similar sound, not quite as many stand out tracks but you get that. Definitely worth a look.
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