27 April 2007

Patrick Wolf howls

Patrick Wolf: The Magic Position
Up-and-coming indie darling Patrick Wolf is in love. He returns to the world of music anew with his third full-length LP, rife with dreamy titles like "The Stars," "Enchanted" and "The Kiss." With one foot planted firmly in pop and the other in traditional folk, the 6'4" multi-instrumentalist has the UK alt-folk world at his fingertips.

Heralded as the new Bowie and known for his flamboyant fashion, ambiguous sexuality and shock of red hair, Wolf's broad-reaching voice and typically melancholy lyrics take a back seat to impressive layers of joyful, Rachmaninoff-inspired pop compositions as colorful as the album packaging.

Gorgeous, wistful flourishes of piano, violin and accompaniment of Marianne Faithfull in "Magpie" capture rapture and bliss, while the dancey single "Accident & Emergency" moves him in a new direction. Not to be missed is the grand opener "Overature" which bears more than a hint of resemblance to Tears for Fears' "Mad World," and the joyous concluding epic "The Stars." The album is a gloriously optimistic awakening for the 23-year-old London-bred musician.

My favorite track happens to be "Augustine," a sort-of love ballad with darkish, silver-lining undertones that puts the spotlight on his smooth, expressive voice and simple piano. It's a breath of comforting familiarity before returning to the new landscape of a computer-enhanced dawn that could only be painted from Crayola's box.

1. Overture
2. The Magic Position
3. Accident & Emergency
4. The Bluebell
5. Bluebells
6. Magpie
7. The Kiss
8. Augustine
9. Secret Garden
10. (Let's Go) Get Lost
11. Enchanted
12. The Stars
13. Finale
(14.) Bluebells (bonus track)

Patrick Wolf - Augustine.mp3
Patrick Wolf - The Stars.mp3
Buy The Magic Position


Nymeth said...

I really like your review. And the album just screams "new love", doesn't it?

The thing is, he wrote it about his relationship with Ingrid Z., and it broke apart before the recording process was finished. He finished the album , and now he finds himself touring and playing these songs every night, when obviously they reflect an emotional place where he simple isn't anymore - and this help explain how hard this tour has been for him, and the recent thing about quitting, and also the quote I posted over at LJ today.

Argh, second PW rant of the day!

*goes away*

June said...

Great insight, thanks for that!