Home > News & Reviews > Paul Simon

Paul Simon - In The Blue Light (Album Review)

Tuesday, 18 September 2018 Written by Jacob Brookman

While Paul Simon may not be as prolific as Bob Dylan (38 solo albums) or Van Morrison (39), he might beat both artists in terms of consistent quality. Records like ‘Rhythm of the Saints’, released in 1990, and 2016’ s ‘Surprise’ often matched the brilliance of his work with Art Garfunkel, but may have been overlooked due to ageism within pop music.

Thus, the 76-year-old is justified in his decision to release an album of reworked songs for his 14th solo release, and ‘In the Blue Light’ calls upon various musical grandees in a marvellous late afternoon assembly of rich, easy-ish listening.

Standout tracks include Rene and Georgette Magritte with Their Dog after the War - from 1983’s ‘Hearts and Bones’ - which is here re-envisioned with New York’s yMusic chamber ensemble to deploy a throbbing, cinematic elegance.

Unlike the original recording, it never quite tumbles into schmaltz and the urgency of the violins gives it a modern orchestral feel that elevates and enriches a song of high, high quality.

Similarly, the new version of The Teacher is a thing of great skill and panache. The original - from 2000’s ‘You’re The One’ - had a pomposity and imbalance to its mix that made it quite an easy song to skip.

Here, duelling guitars give the track a cantering drive that complicates and enriches the vocal. Additionally, while the intellectualism of the lyrics are typically Simon, Wynton Marsalis’s sax drops us into ‘The Dream of the Blue Turtles’-era Sting. Some will run a mile from that, but it works extraordinarily well.

The standout moment, though, is a string makeover of Can’t Run But, again with yMusic and this time arranged by the National’s Bryce Dessner. Not only does this track demonstrate the meticulous melody writing and timeless lyrics of the original, but gives a genuine feeling of originality to a track whose western musicality may have been lost in the Brazilian arrangements of ‘Rhythm of the Saints’.

Simon may be retiring from touring, but let us all hope his music making is far from finished. He’s still learning and improving.

Paul Simon Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Thu September 20 2018 - NEW YORK New York - Madison Square Garden (USA)
Fri September 21 2018 - NEW YORK New York - Madison Square Garden (USA)
Sat September 22 2018 - CORONA - Flushing Meadows Corona Park (USA)

Click here to compare & buy Paul Simon Tickets at Stereoboard.com.





Let Us Know What You Think - Leave A Comment!




Related News

Paul Simon Shares New Version Of Rene And Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War
Wed 29 Aug 2018
Paul Simon got the inspiration for Rene and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War in the 1980s, while absent mindedly flipping through books at Joan Baez’s house before a rehearsal. Happening to land on a picture of the surrealist artist and his family, this humble moment inspired a soft, pretty and gentle song.
Paul Simon Shares Reworked Version Of Can't Run But
Fri 24 Aug 2018
Paul Simon has offered up another glimpse of his new record with a retooled version of Can’t Run But.
Paul Simon Shares Reworked One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
Thu 09 Aug 2018
Paul Simon has shared a reworked version of One Man’s Ceiling is Another Man’s Floor from his new LP ‘In The Blue Light’.
Star Wars For The Ears: Def Leppard's Phil Collen On 'Hysteria' and Beyond
Fri 30 Nov 2018
For the last five years Def Leppard fans, those without money to burn, may have feared the old saying ‘what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas’ would prove depressingly true for them. After all, it was 2013 when the Sheffield quintet performed their 1987 masterpiece ‘Hysteria’ in its entirety during a residency at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Nevada.
Netflix Trailer Released For 'Springsteen On Broadway' Film
Tue 27 Nov 2018
A trailer has been released for the upcoming film of Bruce Springsteen's long-running one man show, 'Springsteen on Broadway'.
Lenny Kravitz Announces Summer London O2 Arena Show
Tue 27 Nov 2018
Lenny Kravitz will return to the UK next summer.
You Me At Six Share Rick and Morty-Inspired Video For Straight To My Head
Wed 12 Dec 2018
You Me At Six have released their first animated video.
Weezer Confirm June O2 Academy Brixton Show, Share Further Details Of 'The Black Album' And New Song
Wed 21 Nov 2018
Weezer will take over the O2 Academy Brixton in London next summer.
 
< Prev   Next >