Tuesday, 23 September 2008

'Everything is Borrowed' - The Streets (album review)

Turns out Mike Skinner only pawned his soul sometime during the making of ‘A Grand Don’t Come For Free’. ‘The Hardest Way To Make An Easy Living’ then went on to sell a few copies, leaving Skinner with enough cash to get his soul back from the pop demons. Sounds like he’s pleased with the reunion too; he’s ploughed it all back into his latest LP ‘Everything is Borrowed’, a title which complicates the metaphor further – maybe the soul wasn’t ever his, maybe he’s borrowed it back. Who knows? Just be glad he’s back on form.

His lyrics are introspective, his voice sounds humble once more and even some of the production is a la ‘Original Pirate Material’. Where production differs, Skinner displays punk, folk, modern electro-indie and 30’s Western bar music influences with some openly poppy leanings. The track titles seem to be taken from a phrase dictionary making for interesting subject matter.

'The Strongest Person I Know' doesn't do anything for me but sadly, it'll probably be loved by your everyday radio listener. Mike Skinner shouldn't do singing - he can't (apart from the bit on 'Love You More' when he sings about drawing).

A listening session is a joyous occasion; Mike is innovative 11 times. From the jerky strings of the title track, through the disco funk of ‘Sherry End’ to the anthemic ballad ‘The Escapist’, ‘Everything is Borrowed’ is a leisurely paddle through the cream of musical genres, albeit mixed with that original Streets flavour that we first tasted in 2001.

There seems to be a few videos too, go to The Beats' Youtube page for those.

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