Friday, April 25, 2008

Modfather May: Stanley Road Revisisted

Paul Weller is coming out with a new disc the first week of June (it seems my Well-ey senses have been tingling of late - just take a look at the previous posts), so I'm going to dedicate the next month to mining video and audio from his very lengthy career. First off is a collection of videos of him and his band playing selections from his Stanley Road album, which was his biggest seller in the UK during his current solo career.

When Stanley came out, I was frankly disappointed by it, as it seemed to trade the acid jazz-tinged, Traffic-inspired tunes of his first solo record and subsequent Wild Wood for a more straight-forward Dad Rock album. I was also rather aghast at its reworking of the previously released "Out of the Sinking," one of my very most favorite tunes and one that meant a lot to me around that time period. For the album, Weller and producer Brendan Lynch pasted in some R&B background singing that just didn't seem to fit.

But as the years have worn on, the album has grown on me (and I'm now a rocking Dad), and these performances on Jools Holland's Later program from the BBC, done some years after the release as a bit of a retrospective (not sure when it was filmed, but it looks from Weller's hair style that it was probably around 2004 to 2005), feature some kick ass grooves.

The lineup of videos is in the playlist wrapper below (with individual links):

"Whirlpool's End" (complete with orchestration and horn section)
"Stanley Road"
"Woodcutter's Son"
"Out of the Sinking" (the backup singers are much more integrated now)

And since this is a playlist capsule from YouTube, you can just let the whole thing play consecutively.