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As always, Weller invited a plethora of excellent musicians and prepared another strong musical experience. | Photo: Raph_PH, by CCA 2.0
As always, Weller invited a plethora of excellent musicians and prepared another strong musical experience. | Photo: Raph_PH, by CCA 2.0
Petr Adamík -

Paul Weller Continues to Show Off His Fine Songwriting

On May 25th, Paul Weller celebrated his sixty-sixth birthday. A day earlier, he gave himself the gift of releasing his seventeenth solo album, simply titled 66, on which he shows how to age with grace.

The last two albums Fat Pop and On Sunset were very colourful and showed that Paul Weller had honed his songwriting skills to perfection as the years passed. The new 66 may not be as adventurous, but the quality hasn't diminished and the songs still maintain a high standard.

The opening track "Ship Of Fools" is a classic Weller song, led by an acoustic guitar with a pleasantly flowing chorus, accompanied by xylophone and flute. The following "Flying Fish" offers a cosmic chorus in a disco rhythm, with more guitar passages emerging later on, which should probably put the listener in the mood for a rock "Jumble Queen". Weller collaborated with Noel Gallagher on the latter, and the track has a touch of classic glam rock à la T-Rex or David Bowie. 

There are not many more live tracks on the album. Only "Soul Wandering", which was co-written by Bobby Gillespie from Primal Scream, has a similar drive. It's a great rhythmical piece with subtly raw guitars and stylish Hammonds at the end. The rest of the album is calmer, but there is no shortage of musical treats. Take, for example, the backing vocals and hypnotic guitar solo in "In Full Flight" or the closing masterpiece "Burn Out", in which Weller reminds us again how much of an influence David Bowie's work has had on him. 

Weller's vocals stand out in the soul-like "Nothing", backed by soft winds. Elements of soul also feature in "Rise Up Singing," which may remind you of Style Council, the formation Weller was in in the 1980s. The string lines contribute to its uplifting atmosphere, not to mention the visually impressive music videos accompanying both singles. This is definitely not a record for a car ride. Time virtually stops when you listen to it, and you're immersed in a world of enchanting tones. 

What can you appreciate about the album as a musician?

While the album, as mentioned before, may not be as adventurous as Weller's last two records, it still offers a wide variety of musical influences. From rock to soul and folk to even the waltz in "My Best Friend's Coat". As always, Weller brought in a plethora of excellent musicians, and together with Christophe Vaillant (Le SuperHomand), they mastered the production process and created another strong musical experience.

Paul Weller - 66

Paul Weller – 66

Polydor/Solid Bond, 00:41:50


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Tagy Paul Weller Recenze alb

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Petr Adamík
In 1999, I co-founded the punk'n'roll band Degradace, with whom I'm still going strong. I've been working at the musical instrument store Hudební Svět for a few years now, and a while ago I decided that I'd like to write about…