David Gray returns with a simply superb collection of surprisingly downbeat and eternally simple songs. Influenced by the death of his father (how could it not be?), A New Day At Midnight sees Gray in a reflective but beautifully poetic mood. Despite the sparse clarity on offer here it never wanders into misery. You can't help but feel there are better times ahead no matter how stripped down and lyrically naked the tracks are here. Stand out tracks for me include "Please Forgive Me Mk 2" - "Carloine", fourth track "Freedom" which is perhaps Gray's most personal to date, and "Last Boat To America" which is beautifully arranged lyrically - showing Gray has mastered the songwriters craft and the art of poetry. Live favourite "Real Love" is a great inclusion although here it is sparse and slightly melancholic, as opposed to the live barnstormer we know. "Be Mine" is a certain UK Number 1 single - this albums "Babylon" if you like. Lyrically it deals with soon-to-be requited love in a way only David Gray can quite pull off without seeming twee. Album closer "The Other Side" is simply stunning and emotionally affecting. No bass - just piano, voice and basic percussion, it treads the ground of death, both of life and of a relationship. A song of many meanings to many people I am quite sure. In short the album is not just "White Ladder Part 2" but a beautiful collection of positive but quite downbeat and sparsely arranged tracks that will, I am sure, surpass its blockbusting forefather commercuially and artistically. Excellent and a must buy.