Sunday, 29 March 2009

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Yes? Nope...



Yes! Yes, yes, YES!!! I wanted to shout out.

But then I heard the album and this is what I said:

Yes? Erm...not really.


Underwhelming, lightweight, slick... some of the words that other reviewers used to describe this album... And I agree.


Love etc.: This one is oviously great. Kind of unusual, good lyrics, catchy but not too catchy...bouncy. I liked it when I first heard it, I liked it even more on the following listens...I still very much like it. :o)

All Over The World: Well, my first reaction to this song was? WTF? They released this?! Then it grew on me. But honestly. I'd rather listen to Tchaikovsky alone than to this. It's an OK song, a feel-good song, it's very uplifting. But The Boys can do better songs.
A note to the lyrics: again, Neil can write better stuff. "this is a song for boys and girls...you hear it playing all over the world" is a little bit too cheesy, isn't it.

Beautiful People: For some a weak part of the album, for me a love on the first listen. Sure, it's not one of the best songs they've ever written but it's exactly my cuppa. Sounds like something that could have been on Release hadn't it been so optimistic (or at least that's the kind of feeling a get from this song...even tho the lyrics - as usual - aren't as optimistic).

Did You See Me Coming: At first I wasn't happy with the production (sounds like Girls Aloud with Neil's vocals) but I got used to it. This should be a single. It's instantiously catchy, clever pop lyrics, Marr's guitar...makes you dance. This is the kind of song I'd want to hear on the radio.

Vulnerable: Hm...dunno...I get this italo/franco disco feeel from it. Not my cup of tea...but then, the music is interesting and the lyrics are actually good once you listen to them (after the first listen all I could remember was the world "vulnerable" :o) )

More Than A Dream: By this point in the album...I'm kind of like "whatever..." and I think this song doesn't deserve it. Dunno what went wrong but by this song I personally feel kind of overwhelmed by the whole thing. All the polish and neat pop. It's just too much.
Anyway, that can, of course, change with time.
The song itself is OK. It actually is really good. But the production...I get the feeling it could have been better (is there something missing? is it something that shouldn't have been there?). Dunno.

Building A Wall: Whatever anyone says... I really enjoy the "protection-prevention-detection-detention..." part of this song. Now, can anyone tell me what the opening chords remind me of? When I find out, I'll tell you. :o) 
The lyrics...I like them. I think it pretty much reflects the world we're living in.

King of Rome: Effing drags on and on...and on. I'm waiting for the moment this song grows on me. So far...nothing. I really don't have the patience to listen to this - it's like waiting for something and it never happens. Try listening to Rufus Wainwright's Memphis Skyline - just when you're about to give up, he comes up with this beautiful thing (3:20). King of Rome lacks this little catharsis. Nothing ever happens. I can't believe I'm writing this but this song could have used some soaring strings.

Pandemonium: Was this the one Kylie rejected? It's a good one but was the Can You Forgive Her? rip off necessary? It sounds like something that could have been on Very. It's 2009! Anyway: the lyrics are great, actually and unusually the "tone" of the music and the "tone" of the lyrics meet.

The Way It Used To Be: Love at the second listen. This, I think, was the song that did benefit from the Xenomania production (and it was co-written by them as well, if I'm not mistaken). There are all those different parts in it...you never feel "bored"...there's always something happening. And the lyrics are perfection. Probably the best song on the album.

Legacy: If there's a song that's worse than King of Rome, it's this one. It's longer. The opening drums ala Paninaro are promising, the bit after that is OK but then there are those weird chord changes that I just don't like. 
Had this song been a sorta P.S. sort of thing max. 2 mins long, I could take it but 6 freaking minutes?! What a lame ending to the overall good album.
Now I'm trying not to listen to Neil's singing and I can hear the instrumental under it is actually very good.

And, take the French part and make another song out of it, please!

And me, yeah I'm so over it.

Summary:

Cones: For the first time there are two songs on a PSB album that are almost unbearable to listen to. In other words: kinda boring. Now, that really is a first for me. :o( 
It's too pop (PSB + Xenomania...isn't it a bit too much?), polished, smooth, cold almost - for my taste.
And a little bit too same-y. 
I get a kind of shallow feeling from the album as a whole.

Pros: The lyrics, as always...even though it's only a standart from Neil on most of the songs, you still won't find many pop lyricists on quite the same level of "great".
Johnny Marr. Chris action (This Used To Be The Future should have been on the album instead of the whole Legacy drag). Shouting is always good. When there's something happening but not too much at the same time, that's also good (The Way It...).

My final verdict - let me quote Mick Rock here: 

Show me some fucking teeth!

Pet Shop Boys know how to show them, sadly I've seen only a tooth or two on this album. Too bad there weren't a little bit more of them. I liked the ones I saw.