Sonik KicksAlbum | Paul Weller By Jim Allen
The Modfather matures without settling down.
After 35 years on the rock & roll frontlines, Paul Weller is at the point in his career were many music vets start coasting, or at least settle down into a somewhat predictable pattern. Bucking that trend, the former Jam/Style Council frontman started eschewing his established Britpop/soul/folk amalgam in 2008 with 22 Dreams, creating a world of quirky - occasionally even jarring -- stylistic juxtapositions that finds its third album-length outlet in Sonik Kicks. As with the former album and 2010's Wake Up the Nation, Weller basically does whatever the hell he wants whenever the hell he wants to within this record's aural environs. The album opens with a blast of electro-psychedelic rock via "Green," and then proceeds to careen through Brecht/Weill on acid ("Kling I Klang"), ambient chamber instrumentals ("Sleep of the Serene"), mellow acoustic balladry ("By The Waters"), grand evocations of Led Zep's "Kashmir" ("Drifters"), and whatever else happens to float Weller's boat. Fortunately for us, though, Weller has developed enough songwriting skill over the course of his long, prolific career that no matter which road he goes down, he's able to make it work.
|That Dangerous Age|