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James Dean Bradfield - The Great Western

Discussion in 'Music, Box Office, TV & Books' started by JimmyEatWorms, 24 Jul 2006.

  1. JimmyEatWorms


    Joined: 18 May 2003

    Posts: 4,686

    Location: Londinium

    Released today. JDB's first solo project and his first foray into writing lyrics (apart from Ocean Spray on the Know Your Enemy album and Firefight on the God Save The Manics EP). It's already been getting good reviews from most of the mainstream press...even the NME (who traditinally slate anything to do with the manics at every opportunity). ANyway, here's a mini review I did back when I first heard it (yes, I was nawty and downloaded a leaked copy, but now have the disc firmly in my gras). Well worth checking out even if you aren't a big fan of the manics.

    1. That's No Way To Tell A Lie

    Hand claps and sha-la-la-la's. What more does a song need? Extremely catchy song that kind of imprints itself into your brain after couple of listens.


    2. An English Gentleman

    A very beatles-esque keyboard thing going on. Very "bouncy" and again...a chorus that just gets you hooked.


    3. Bad Boys & Painkillers

    Even though this track was penned by the wire, it's probably one of the most un-manics track on the album. James has really departed from the manics sound and gone in his own direction. AGAIN!!! A fantascically constructed chorus. Fantastic backing vocals which really beef out the sound.


    4. On Saturday Morning We Rule The World

    This track doesn't really do it for me. I can't put my finger on it but something just doesn't fit. I think it trys to go in too many different directions at once. Not a bad song by any means but just not for me.


    5. Run Romeo Run

    When it started off with the synths I thought it was going to be quite bland....but once this track gets going it turns into a bit of a rocker. Very 80's in its sound but still sounding very fresh.


    6. Still A Long Way To Go

    This song is as close to damn perfect as I have heard. While having an really haunting sound it has passion in spades. "I can't give you an A to Z, there's some things I just can't show" may sound like a bit of a corny line when you see it written down but it is delivered with such heart it makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end. The best song I have heard for a VERY long time. Absolute genius. I just can't stop listening to this gem.


    7. Emigre

    After a very Snow Patrol-ish intro (no bad thing I may add) we get into a great anthemtic chorus which I can see being a bit of a crowd pleaser when played live. It reminds me a bit of Australia.


    8. To See A Friend In Tears

    This seems to be JDB's marmite moment of the album. You either love it or hate it. I come down on the side of the former...I love it (the song...not marmite). It's simple. It's touching. It's mellow. I've never heard the original so I'm either not seeing what James has done wrong with this track or I am listening to it with an objective ear....i'll let you decide.


    9. Say Hello To The Pope

    This is a good pop song...not great but good. Another catchy chorus from Bradders (this album seems to be full of them).


    10. The Wrong Beginning

    This song has tweaked a memory in me that I just cannot place. At first the song seems to plod along at a snails pace but the more I listen to it the more I hear the beauty of it. In the same way that OSMWRTW is missing something I can't place, this track HAS something I can't place. I can't really explain why I like this track...but I do.


    11. Which Way To Kyiffin

    This track would have been much better if it wasn't for that quite bizarre repetitive sound in the intro. That aside (as you stop noticing it after a while) it's another really well crafted song with great backing vocals...but for some reason it ends extremely prematurely. A bit of an anti-climax for the album in all honesty. James could have done a lot more with this as he had the basis for a beatiful song but decided to give up half way through. Strange one.


    Overall, this is a great album and really shows offf JDB's versatility as a musician and a fantastic song-writer. I didn't really hold out much hope for this record when JDB announced the project. I though it would be Manics-lite with little real substance. How could I be sooo wrong.

    Overall score - 9/10
    Last edited: 24 Jul 2006