Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Keys to the World

Keys to the World, the new album from Richard Ashcroft starts off interestingly enough. "Why Not Nothing" exhibits a soulful and brashy classic rock swagger. It is the decicive sound of a man attempting to make a departure from the expectations of longtime Verve fans. And it is a welcome effort. Alas, by the album's third and forth tracks, "Break The Night With Color" and ""Words Just Get In the Way," we are reminded what it was exactly that made those Verve fans so rabid. Finally the album settles into a moody and delightful compromise. I'm most happy to report that overall the new offering is a huge improvement from 2002's Human Conditions, where I felt Ashcroft got a bit lost. Here he gracefully rediscovers his own voice- shy and introspective but equally obstinate.

The new album, previously available only as an import, will arrive stateside March 21, 2006 courtesy of Virgin.

Richard Ashcroft: "Break The Night With Color"


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