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22 Dreams

14 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 22, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

''After As Is Now I thought the time was right to make the sort of record I
wanted to make,'' says Paul Weller of the creative process which led
to his striking ninth solo album 22 Dreams. ''Instead of worrying about
anyone else, I wanted to really push the boat out. I think the result is going
to surprise a few people.'' Surprises have always been part of the artistic
vernacular for the man who changed rock forever with The Jam, explored a host of eclectic influences with The Style Council and cemented his position as the patriarch of Brit pop with his legendary solo work. 22 Dreams is the latest chapter in a creative journey spanning 30 years, with material spanning the full breadth of popular music rock to classical, avant garde to funk and spoken word to experimental. In addition to a cast of Weller s frequent collaborators including Steve Cradock and producer Simon Dine, 22 Dreams also features some of the largest beneficiaries of Weller s
incalculable musical influence. Noel Gallagher and Gem from Oasis lend
their talents to Echoes Around the Sun, a writing collaboration between
Weller and Gallagher. Ex-Blur guitarist Graham Coxon appears on Black
River. The spirit of collaboration and an in-the-moment creative approach
have resulted in one of Weller s most spirited works and one that is sure to
expand the artistic canon of the one and only Modfather.

Amazon.com

It's never too long between Paul "The Modfather" Weller albums. Yet the starlet's prolific solo output over the last decade or so hasn’t often reached the artistic heights of his work with The Jam or The Style Council. While consistent enough, recent projects have been marred by a certain complacency--a tendency to settle for the middle ground instead of the soaring, surprising heights of yesteryear. But on 22 Dreams, some of the old punk fire returns. Buoyed by a stellar Britpop cast including former Blur guitarist Graham Coxon and Oasis members Noel Gallagher and Gem Archer, 22 Dreams is the sound of Weller finally taking an unexpected artistic leap after a series of steady steps. Working across a wide range of genres--rock, funk, soul, free jazz, krautrock, classical music, electronica, even spoken word--Weller presents an hour-plus odyssey full of eccentric surprises and loveable chaos. From the blue-eyed soul of "Have You Made Up Your Mind?" and the eerily brilliant "Echoes Around the Sun" (a Weller/Gallagher collaboration), to experimental offerings such as "111" and acid-folk opener "Light Nights", Weller digs deep into his magician's hat, and pulls out rabbit after rabbit. Some of the more off-the-wall moments--"God" for example--won't be for everyone, but the way everything collides together in a haphazard, devil-may-care manner serves to remind us that we should never write off our beloved veterans--you never know when they’re going to take an unexpected artistic risk.--Danny McKenna

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 22, 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Yep Roc Records
  • ASIN: B001AE3V4M
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,567 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Jimmy.M on July 22, 2008
Format: Audio CD
The legendary rock star, Paul Weller makes his comeback!
If nothing else, you tend to associate Paul Weller with lean and muscular music - rock without any flab or fripperies.
So the big surprise about the epic "22 Dreams" is just how much latitude Weller gives himself to wander off down intriguing musical backwaters.
Some 30 years spent as a bedrock of great British songcraft is time enough for a man to be allowed to indulge himself a little.
Hence this Paul Weller 70-minute concept album relating a young man's journey from heartbreak to spiritual awakening, blending together an eclectic array of genres, spanning two discs, 21 tunes and much of the musical spectrum: trad folk, lounge, psychedelia and piano balladry included.
Yes, there are the mod anthems, spirited evocations of Sixties R&B, like the title track.
But there are instrumental interludes which run the gamut from eastern classical to blithe jazz, all invested with a dream-like quality.
Even so, all are unmistakably Weller.
The voice of a generation can't be disguised by shifting genre. Despite the eclectic aspirations, standouts recall the vibrant English soul that first marked the latter days of the Jam.
There are curiosities like "Light Nights", which is earnest folk with a whiff of Pentangle about it, and "Why Walk When You Can Run", a pining bit of acoustica which could almost belong on the latest Neil Diamond album.
There are liberal dose of strings, occasional whiffs of Curtis Mayfield and Marvin Gaye and, with the apparent theme of changing seasons, a sense of something epic happening, but without the dreary sense of self-importance which often comes with a concept album.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Russell D. Melling on August 2, 2008
Format: Audio CD
At this late point in his illustrious career Paul Weller manages to pull off a feat which few artists of his stature (or vintage) can do; produce a nearly-perfect comeback record. While it may not have the stylistic flashes of Wildwood or Stanley Road, the Modfather doesn't have to impress anyone but himself. A great release well worth waiting for.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Susan Petrone on December 4, 2008
Format: Audio CD
Okay, so there are 21 songs, not the expected 22. Don't let it bother you. This is the first disc in a long time that feels like a fully realized album to me. It isn't a concept album--I don't find any common thematic thread musically or lyrically, yet somehow each song rolls perfectly into the next. In particular, the flow from the title track to All I Wanna Do (Is Be with You), to Have You Made up Your Mind? to Empty Ring to Invisible to Song for Alice feels like one unbroken continuum, despite their varied musical styles. Yes, there are a couple of tracks that might have been better left off the disc (for instance God or 111), but somehow they don't bother me as they would on another artist's record. Perhaps it's because I feel like Weller really believes in those tracks. In another musician's hands, they would strike me as pretentious. On 22 Dreams, they just feel like a couple of good ideas that didn't work out. As a long-time Paul Weller fan, I've long since given up on hoping for a return to The Jam's sound. You hear it here and there, but what is great about Weller is that he continues to move forward as a musician long after many other guys would be living off the royalties from their greatest hits boxed sets.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kurt Harding VINE VOICE on October 15, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
While I don't agree with the industry reviewer's assertion that Paul Weller's solo career has not matched the creative heights of his years with The Jam and The Style Council, I do agree that his solo work tended to remain within his stylistic comfort zone. But here on 22 Dreams, Weller proves that he is not afraid to blend genres.
There is so much to like here and such a diversity of styles, its hard to know where to start showering it with praise, so I will begin with the very first song which assures the listener that this will be no ordinary Paul Weller album. My favorites are Light Nights, with its fine guitar work; the rocking Have You Made Up Your Mind; the soulful Empty Ring; a fine instrumental with Song For Alice; another excellent rocker on Cold Moments; the driving Push It Along, the rocking Echoes Round The Sun; the Latin-tinged One Bright Star; Lullaby Fuer Kinder, an instrumental evocative of Boz Scaggs; the religious introspection of God which really makes one think; and yet another fine rocker with Sea Spray.
That I have chosen so many highlights doesn't mean I don't like the rest. There is something to like about every song!
It is clear that with 22 Dreams Paul Weller's gamble has paid off. He says that this is the kind of record he's always wanted to make and I for one am glad he did. 22 Dreams comes with a mini-booklet containing pictures, album info, and a poetic short story called The Missing Dream AKA Dream #22 by some chap named Simon Armitage. If you are a Weller fan, don't skip this opportunity to hear him play the kind of music he's always wanted to play!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Pj Thorp on August 28, 2008
Format: Audio CD
Paul's back, with more of the great tune revival we heard in Illumination.
Much of his earlier solo work left us pining for Style Council and Jam, but melody is back in this deep collection of well written songs.
Of particular interest to me was the song about God, where the singer suggests that people just lead their own lives, ignoring God, until they're in desperate need of something, and then turn to God for help. So true so often.
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Release is when?
In the U.S., the album will be out July 22nd. (It's right underneath the price on the Amazon page.) Also, refer to the Yep Roc Records site that also has it out July 22nd.
Jun 23, 2008 by tbtb |  See all 4 posts
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