16 April 2008

James: blunt

or,
The Curious Case of Whether There's
a New Record by the Band James


Seven years ago, after dismal sales of their record "Pleased to Meet You," Manchester act James cashed in. Rather, singer Tim Booth left, and the rest of the band didn't know what to do. The cruel irony is that the record was the finest of the band's already strong career. Anthemic. Sweeping. Propulsive. Free of filler.

So why the hell didn't anyone buy it? I dunno, except that on this side of the pond, people only know James from their hit "Laid." And most people only know "Laid" thanks to the "American Pie" movies. (So see, those movies were good for something.)

Anyway, the band is allegedly back. Allegedly because the new album, released last week in the UK and released yesterday stateside, doesn't seem to be, technically, available anywhere. Even Amazon.com (both the US and the UK variety) lists the brand new record as "temporarily out of stock" and there are no sound samples. Their record label doesn't list them among its staple of artists. Yesterday, the band's new Web site didn't work.

Not a good sign for what used to be a powerhouse arena act over yonder. The good news: The Web site seems to be working this morning, complete with song snatches to listen at. And it's good. Booth sounds as subtle as a pink Christmas tree, with lines like, "Hey, ma! The kids in body bags, coming home in pieces," all set to a sweet pop melodies. (Booth Luzianne-clear tenor is the reason I once said that it takes balls to sing like a girl.)

Anyway, give it a listen. You'll like. Unfortunately, the buy and download links aren't working yet. I'm gonna keep trying. "Pleased to Meet You" stayed in rotation for about three years and still gets frequent spins. I owe them a good effort to track down this record.

1 comment:

Samantha said...

You write very well.