Aug 212008

You may recall in late June the stunning announcement of the coming of a new Paul Weller album, 22 Dreams. As planned, the album hit on July 22, and I was all over it! How could I not have been primed for this release after the press release announced this momentous occasion?

”After As Is Now I thought the time was right to make the sort of record I wanted to make,” says Paul Weller of the creative process which led to his striking ninth solo album 22 Dreams. ”Instead of worrying about anyone else, I wanted to really push the boat out. I think the result is going to surprise a few people.” Surprises have always been part of the artistic vernacular for the man who changed rock forever with The Jam, explored a host of eclectic influences with The Style Council and cemented his position as the patriarch of Brit pop with his legendary solo work. 22 Dreams is the latest chapter in a creative journey spanning 30 years, with material spanning the full breadth of popular music rock to classical, avant garde to funk and spoken word to experimental. In addition to a cast of Weller s frequent collaborators including Steve Cradock and producer Simon Dine, 22 Dreams also features some of the largest beneficiaries of Weller’s incalculable musical influence. Noel Gallagher and Gem from Oasis lend their talents to “Echoes Around the Sun”, a writing collaboration between Weller and Gallagher. Ex-Blur guitarist Graham Coxon appears on “Black River”. The spirit of collaboration and an in-the-moment creative approach have resulted in one of Weller s most spirited works and one that is sure to expand the artistic canon of the one and only Modfather.

To give Weller’s dream album adequate time for digestion, I’ve waited until now to share my thoughts. I’ll share a few other tracks from this album as you read along, but first, why don’t you listen to the lead-off track, “Light Nights”?

Paul Weller, “Light Nights”

I think you will agree this is the way Weller would want you to begin thinking about his new album.


  6 Responses to “Paul Weller…As His Music Was Meant to Sound!”

  1. diskojoe

    As a fellow Modfather fan, a very perceptive post, Mr. Mod. I got my copy a few weeks ago & it strikes me as your typical Weller album w/ a bit o’ diversion. The one thing I don’t understand is the big whoop about this being a “double album”. It’s 68 minutes long on a single CD. Most albums today are usually 55-70 minutes long. Also, isn’t the concept of an “album” becoming obsolete in this digital download age?

    P.S.: I dig the J. Beckett/J. White thing on the top.

  2. hrrundivbakshi

    No, no, no, no NO. Seriously, busting on “Empty Ring” while singling out the corn-studded “Where’er Ye Go” for approval is just WRONG.

    Come on, Mod — are you telling me you can take Weller seriously when he (suppressing serious guffaw here) croons into the mic, head upturned, one hand just touching one ear, eyes closed in gentle contemplation, “…where’er ye go…”?

    WHERE’ER YE GO?! Who the fuck says “where’er ye go”?! Chaucer? 19th-century Irish potato farmers? Even Gordon Lightfoot had more taste than that.

    If you can explain to me how using that insincere, bathetic olde englishe-ism *doesn’t* ruin that song (if not make it outright hilarious), I’ll reconsider. I mean, come ON.

    I need to hear from you on this. I’m really concerned.


  3. hrrundivbakshi


    Two observations about Weller the 50-something dude:

    1. That’s got to be the worst-looking hair in all of today’s rock and roll. And that’s saying something!

    2. I swear, he looks and sounds like a gum-chewing Nigel Tufnel in that interview segment.

    I love me some Paul Weller, but I gotta call ’em like I see ’em.

  4. Mr. Moderator

    You’re batting 1 for 2 so far, HVB! I know that the song I singled out is hard to take seriously for the title alone, but as a piece of music it floats into my ears and makes an impression. He put way too much effort into that title, but the song itself flows better than most of this stuff.

  5. BigSteve

    I used to buy all of Weller’s solo records. I liked some more than others. Somehow my interest in him just finally dribbled away. I was surprised to discover I had his last one (As Is Now 2005). I’ve got to say these tracks here did nothing to tempt me. The guy’s a pro, but I just don’t think he has anything to say to me anymore.

    The hair is pretty embarrassing, and the Tufnelocity of the interview is undeniable.

    Q: What is there left for you to do?
    A: Just carry on livin’ really.

  6. Mr. Moderator

    “Tufnelocity”…RTH Glossary term anyone?

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