Review by Dom Vigil
Paul Weller tackles a diverse musical landscape without even breaking a sweat on his new album, A Kind Revolution. Timeless in sound but still fresh and fun to listen to, this album is a ride from start to finish. Soon to be classic songs like “Woo See Mama” sit nicely next to spacey tracks like “Nova” or “Long Long Road,” and while these wildly different tracks normally wouldn’t mesh well, it only takes a moment for it to click.
Opening track “Woo See Mama” is not only timeless in sound, but it’s also incredibly full feeling. Not only do you get a wide range of vocals from this song, but it is also carried by strong guitar work that never feels overpowering and a colorful backing brass section. Contrasting wildly with “Woo See Mama” is the spacey “Nova.” These two songs don’t even sound like they should be on the same album until about halfway through “Nova” when the classic guitar work and horns come in. It’s an unlikely combination when you really think about it, but somehow, it just works. It’ll only take a couple more songs before you realize that this is a common theme on this record.
Third track, “Long Long Road” takes what would normally be a classic sounding ballad and gives it a theatrical twist with orchestral elements that come in during the chorus. This track is stunning and massive, and within just three songs, Paul Weller easily proves his songwriting abilities once more.
Following track, “She Moves With The Fayre” is where things finally start to come together. The first three songs on the album, while each strong in their own way, don’t necessarily flow together or connect with one another, but in this fourth song, you’ll finally be able to hear the blending of sounds and genres. “She Moves With The Fayre” feels like a cumulation of the three songs that come before it. Those orchestral elements of “Long Long Road” are there, accompanied by soulful guitar work and spacey, echoey vocals. A few songs later, “Hopper” is also a great example of this, with a strong brass section yet very smooth, groovy vocals.
From there, Weller takes us on yet another journey with “New York” and “One Tear.” With a strong bass line and soulful vocals, “New York” sets the tone for the last few songs on the album, while “One Tear” follows with a very ambient sound and a groove that will have you bobbing your head along in no time. Finally, bringing the album to a massive close is “The Impossible Idea.”
By the time A Kind Revolution comes to an end, you might not quite understand just what hit you. These songs play like a soundtrack of sorts, rather than an album. Each track is a different chapter, and it may take a few songs to fully understand it, but they certainly do come together to form an entire story. On top of this, each song on the album is incredibly complex, but without coming off as overwhelming. The result is a very easy to listen to album, but something that will grab your attention and refuse to let go until the very end.
Listen to "Woo See Mama" or "Long Long Road"
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