vendredi, septembre 17, 2004

Ian Brown

Ian Brown. Solarized, FICTION

By Andy Gill

17 September 2004

Ian Brown's fourth solo offering is, like its predecessors, an infuriatingly uneven piece of work. The situation is neatly encapsulated in the track "Upside Down", a typical Brownian psychedelic dubscape that finds him wheeling out clichéd cosmic tosh like: "The sands of time will blow my mind", then a few lines later observing that: "Oil is the spice to make a man forget man's worth" - one of the better metaphors applied to the present Gulf conflict.

But the album's more appealing points - the My Bloody Valentine-style fuzz guitars of "Destiny or Circumstance"; the Morricone-esque piano of the title track; Brown's pronunciation of the word "mesmerising" - outweigh the awful package design and the choice of "Keep What Ya Got" as a single, which, being co-composed and mostly performed by Noel Gallagher, has an entirely different musical texture to the rest of the album.

Brown's on firmer ground with his co-production team of drummer/keyboardist Dave McCracken and guitarist/horn player Tim Willis, whose trumpet lends an engaging "Alone Again Or" tone to "Time Is My Everything". Between them, they devise a groove for the album that recalls early Massive Attack; a blend of dub, house, psychedelia and blues with touches of techno and middle-eastern tonalities that add extra spice to some tracks.

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