An Orchestrated Songbook
published: 18 /
Experimental and inventive new album from Paul Weller which reworks some of his Jam, Style Council and solo back catalogue with orchestral arrangements
One of the joys of Paul Weller's music is the way it reflects his ever-changing moods. This has always resulted in a vitality that few of Weller's peers can ever quite match.
Having been a Beatles and Who-obsessed teenager in his Jam years, Weller developed into an urbane soul performer with the Style Council in the 1980s before launching into his hugely successful, yet never predictable, solo career.
With 'An Orchestrated Songbook', Weller is offering something new and different, yet again. This is his first album of symphonic arrangements. It was recorded in May at London's Barbican, with conductor Jules Buckley and the BBC Symphony Orchestra and, with great finesse, it adds sumptuous strings and horns to tracks spanning Weller's entire catalogue! With Buckley's deft orchestrations, all the Weller songs have been framed beautifully.
'Modfather' Weller became a grandfather in September when his daughter Leah gave birth to a son – and Weller has suggested that this might be why he has avoided some of the anthems of his youth on the new release. There's no space here for 'In The City' or 'Town Called Malice' but some of the mellower Jam tracks are here. 'English Rose' is cast in a new light while 'Carnation' becomes a cinematic-style piece with a Disney-esque harp finale. The Style Council are not forgotten with 'My Ever Changing Moods' and a version of 'You're The Best Thing' which retains the soulful feel of the original and includes an interesting duet with Boy George. Other cameos include Celeste on 'Wild Wood' and James Morrison on 'Broken Stones'.
At 63, Paul Weller is still producing quality songs and his three most recent albums - 'True Meanings', 'On Sunset' and 'Fat Pop (Volume 1)' are well represented on 'An Orchestrated Songbook', too. The title track is a six minute soul symphony which lends itself perfectly to the orchestral treatment. Whilst 'Equanimity' has a wonderful, fairground, brassy feel.
'An Orchestrated Songbook' is a typically bold Weller venture - and it has paid off handsomely!
My Ever Changing Moods
Broken Stones [feat. James Morrison]
It's A Very Deep Sea
You're The Best Thing
Still Glides The Stream
Wild Wood [feat. Celeste]
You Do Something To Me
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