18 Songs, 47 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Former Jam and Style Council leader Paul Weller has begun experiencing a creative renaissance since breaking 50. 22 Dreams brought him back into relevancy and Wake Up the Nation is a powerful and diverse collection of songs that shoots in all directions. His reunion with the Jam’s bassist Bruce Foxton for the mod-paced “Fast Car/Slow Traffic” (at under two minutes) is as rewarding as his Roy Orbison-styled “No Tears to Cry” or his unlikely pairing with My Bloody Valentine’s Kevin Shields for “7 & 3 Is the Strikers Name.” The keyboard-led instrumental “In Amsterdam” strikes a note of nostalgia for an unspecified time. “She Speaks” loses itself in a whirlwind of piano and polyrhythms that suggest Weller could turn himself into the most unlikely of world music practitioners should he care to switch careers. “Aim High” breaks into a psychedelic funk. “Trees” adds a New Orleans gumbo piano for a sudden shot at rhythm & blues. Weller’s creating a third career with equally convincing intensity.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Former Jam and Style Council leader Paul Weller has begun experiencing a creative renaissance since breaking 50. 22 Dreams brought him back into relevancy and Wake Up the Nation is a powerful and diverse collection of songs that shoots in all directions. His reunion with the Jam’s bassist Bruce Foxton for the mod-paced “Fast Car/Slow Traffic” (at under two minutes) is as rewarding as his Roy Orbison-styled “No Tears to Cry” or his unlikely pairing with My Bloody Valentine’s Kevin Shields for “7 & 3 Is the Strikers Name.” The keyboard-led instrumental “In Amsterdam” strikes a note of nostalgia for an unspecified time. “She Speaks” loses itself in a whirlwind of piano and polyrhythms that suggest Weller could turn himself into the most unlikely of world music practitioners should he care to switch careers. “Aim High” breaks into a psychedelic funk. “Trees” adds a New Orleans gumbo piano for a sudden shot at rhythm & blues. Weller’s creating a third career with equally convincing intensity.

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