John Murray on the return of the Scottish singer-songwriter
We waited a while for the new Paolo Nutini album so what do we expect?
More of the same?
Wee Paolo has moved on and it shows on this new album Caustic Love (Atlantic).
With a song title like Numpty he may go over the heads of the non-Scots along with his reference to square sausage in the liner notes.
Numpty is like his custom style of laid back blues and nothing too taxing but then hear Better Man with every emotion drawn to convey the new soul he has found or indeed torment from his personal life.
Further on Looking For Something has generous soul yet if you sampled just one track, the current single Scream (Funk My Life Up) this could have been from Prince with its tease and funk and brass overkill paving the way to the sample fuelled Let Me Down Easy which at time becomes a duet with the original by Betty Lavette before Janelle Monae gains full duet credit on the funky Fashion.
Then we get a full rocking (Beatles) Helter Skelter arrangement on Cherry Blossom which will be a storming live presentation before the calming Someone Like You to finish with harmonious backing and the feel of Save The Last Dance For Me.
If you are seeking new song writing talent then sample Josh (Misty Creek), from Josh Taerk.
Perhaps inspired by Bruce Springsteen he has the support of fellow musicians and a recent UK tour saw him play acoustically in university campuses in an intense two week period.
The album has four bonus stripped back acoustic versions of the new songs to give an indication as to what those shows were like.
Figure This Out shows his story telling passion and Smell The Roses, an early song of his is extremely moving in both forms.
The Undivided are new to me and are a power trio from South Wales Valleys with a fresh rock album called This New Day.
Young and energetic new rock like their Headlights or Worlds Apart could make these guys national idols given some support and more exposure.