pepperlandgirl: (Pepperlandgirl)
( Jan. 18th, 2009 08:34 pm)
Paul McCartney was on The View earlier this week because he was promoting his new album Electric Arguments, released under the name The Fireman. He discussed that he enjoyed recording this way because it wasn't pop, it was more dance music, and he didn't have the pressure to be Paul McCartney. Now, I think it's pretty obvious that Paul has always felt the pressure to be Paul McCartney, and I think when he forgets that pressure, he shows true moments of brilliance. I can understand that. In fact, sometimes I get ideas for certain stories and fics and think, "Okay, if I ever do that, it'll be under a different name."

But I don't think Paul is that way. I think he doesn't even get "out there" ideas until he's given himself permission to be someone else. That's just pure speculation on my part, of course, but he was my obsession for many, many years, and that's always the sense I've had of him. I think that's one of the reasons why he began collaborating with John Lennon. John was a much bigger, stronger personality that he could hide behind, thus freeing him to explore (Note: I said in the beginning. I'm not saying that was always the case).

Ten+ years ago, Paul released Flaming Pie. I thought it was brilliant. I still think it's brilliant. After that came Run Devil Run (mostly cover songs, very decent album), Driving Rain, Chaos and Creation in the Backyard, and Memory Almost Full. I couldn't even listen to the last two albums. At one point, when playing Memory Almost Full, I actually thought to myself, "Have I lost my love for Macca? What has happened to him?!"

I know there are a lot of people who criticize Paul, who say that he needed Lennon for the edge, but I never believed that, and I think that people who create a binary between the two of them pretty much don't get The Beatles at all. Anyway, my point is that I know Paul McCartney is capable of more than vaguely bland, run-of-the-mill pop music. More than that, I know I've got to be patient with him because, quite frankly, he's made some awful albums. [livejournal.com profile] gigglestheblood didn't think I'd be interested in Electric Arguments because I didn't like Driving Rain, Chaos and Creation in the Backyard or Memory Almost Full. But I knew that I had to give Paul another chance, because I would always give him another chance.

This was a very long way to get around to my review of Electric Arguments, but I wanted it to be clear where I was coming from when I said I really like the album. It's creative. It's interesting. It's unexpected. I felt like I was listening to something that Paul could have done forty years ago--and I mean that in the best possible way. I'm not saying Electric Arguments sounds anything like the Beatles. It most assuredly does not. But it sounds like an album made by a man who is at his creative peak. By a man who is not afraid to push himself, push his limits, and explore. The lyrics aren't as important as the music, but there were a few songs that were absolutely beautiful, lyric-wise.

If Paul McCartney recorded every album under the guise of The Fireman (and I suppose collaborated with Martin Glover on every album), I would be much happier. I think a lot of people would re-evaluate Sir McCartney. I would honestly recommend this album to, well, everybody. And I'm not just saying that because I lurve Paul McCartney so much--I do, but I don't love everything he's ever done.
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