Kylie: Fever

I have to confess that Kylie's last single, "Can't get you out of head" is just a smidgen catchy. I keep finding myself humming the damn thing, and short of whacking myself on the head with a large mallet, I can't think of anyway other way of dislodging it. Anyway, the sassy little Australian midget seems to be doing quite nicely in the record sales department at the moment, so I thought I would pander to those Kylie fans out there and do my best to write a fair an unbiased review of "Fever". The opening track "more more more" has a great solid dance beat and the only really annoying part of the song is the sound effect that sounds exactly like the ring tone of my mobile. Infact the first time I heard it, I started frantically fumbling around in my coat pocket for my phone. My daughter is particularly keen on "Can't get you out of my head" and she loves dancing around the lounge, bouncing off the walls singing along to it, however, as she's only 5, she is much closer to the target audience than me. The album continues all the way through in the same jolly vein. "Dancefloor" is yet another example of this uncomplicated but entrancing beat and its title is a very unsubtle suggestion of where it is best suited. I don't want to be too unkind to this album because knocking it would be like having a go at cup-a-soup, i.e. its fine in its right place, however I'm afraid the right place is not on my stereo.

Geldof: Sex, Age and Death

Since the demise of the Rats, Sir Bob has probably been better known for his fund raising activities and his private life. He's had a few mediocre solo albums but has been fairly quite of late. Now he's comeback with some new material, he's dropped the "Bob" and wheeled in the ex rats bassist and co-writer, Pete Briquette, and the result is a huge roller coaster of an album. Anyone familiar with Geldof's lyrics will find his metaphors instantly recognisable and his vocal style remains unchanged from his early boomtown rats days. The album kicks off with "One For Me" where a slapping acoustic guitar and gentle vocals introduce us to a plucking Mark Knopfler styled guitar and some stolen Hendrix lyrics before rolling into a harmonious sing-a-long chorus. "Mudslide" too starts of tamely and promises to be fairly uneventful until a blistering guitar lick takes us into another powerful chorus. "Mind in Pocket" sounds a bit like a Death In Vegas song at first before the grungy guitar kicks in as Geldof bleats out some great lines like "There's people on the streets, dancing to their car alarms". "Scream in Vain" sounds up to date with its echoing drums and a pulsating bass, towards the end of the song it changes tempo and for some unexplained reason makes me conjure up images of Frank Skinner dancing in his underpants. Moving swiftly along, Geldof's potty mouth lyrics to "Inside Your Head" afford the album a parental warning sticker on the front of the album. Fortunately this has been placed in the bottom left hand corner so as not to obscure the lovely album cover. I don't suppose it will be everyone's cup of tea but in my humble opinion, this is Geldof's best work since 1979's "The Fine Art of Surfacing".


Mick has taken some valuable time off from running his local convenience store on the corner of Stella Street to commit a few sonic thoughts to tape, and its been a worthwhile activity. The new album contains 12 new Jagger penned pieces and features some special guest appearances. "God Gave me Everything" features significant offerings from Lenny Kravitz. Lenny plays guitar, bass, drums and even tambourine on this high speed three and a half minutes of classic rock. "Gun" featuring a dazzling guitar contribution courtesy of Pete Townsend seems like quite a departure from the usual Stones stuff with its boppy backbeat and synthesisers, but it really comes into its own when Mr Townsend attempts to drown everyone else out. Mick has made good use of his over active loins by getting two of his daughters to provide the backing vocals to "Brand New Set of Wheels", the slower tempo and idiosyncratic voice on this track make it sound more like the typical Stones Ballard. Although I'm a bit of a fan of Keith, Ronnie and Charlie I actually preferred this album to the last Stones studio release.

Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra & Friends: Small World, Big Band

This is not so much a Jools Holland album featuring a wide array of special guests as a various artists album that just happens to have Jools playing some great keyboards on each track. I especially like the photographs on the inside cover; they feature a series of snapshots of Jools with his arm around, or stood next to, each of his guest artists. It looks rather like the scrapbook of a fortunate tourist who bumped into a few celebrities on his travels. It's quite a nifty little marketing trick too. As the album features tracks by many big name artists like Sting, Paul Weller, Van Morrison, Mick Hucknall and Eric Clapton to name but a few, the fans of these artists are just going to have to add this album to their bulging collections too. The 22 track CD makes it jolly good value but restricts me to selecting a few choice contributors. "Horse to Water" written and performed by George Harrison has that big band feel and its prominent brass and strong backing vocals would allow it sound quite at home on the soundtrack to the Blues Brothers. "The Hand that Changed It's Mind" written by Holland and Malcolm John Rebennack (A.K.A. Dr John) has the traditional New Orleans Jazz style associated with Dr. John and features his distinctive deep-south voodoo vocals. "I put a Spell on You" featuring Mica Paris and David Gilmour is great reworking of this classic little ditty and possibly my favourite track on the album. It starts with a classical orchestral arrangement providing the backing to some blues piano and the diva herself in full swing. It soon develops to feature even more corking blues guitar, piano and vocals. I imagine it would be pretty impressive to hear some of this material live, but if you can't get tickets to the current tour, this recording is the next best thing