Creosote’s first album since doesn’t have quite the same woozy charm, trading the lush and eerie textures for gentler, more traditional ditties, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t still pleasures to be plundered.
It's this type of depth and detail that brings the images to life, and working within the loose borders of a historical theme has allowed Anderson to produce the most focused and detailed record of his career.
An album that feeds the imagination and makes you long for mountains, open space, and something a little more natural.
From Scotland with Love stands testimony to the increasing genius of Anderson and his craft.
Even without the sports and the cinema this record’s still a beautiful thing, flitting between affecting, inspiring, amusing and enchanting.
From Scotland With Love’ is awash with Alba pride, from glorious patriotic soundscapes to Kenny Anderson’s distinct croon. But what’s most striking here is the album’s variety.
The strength of KC’s lyrical, narrative-led songwriting is such that, even shorn of their redolent visual accompaniments, the tales told in the likes of Cargill or Miserable Strangers are deeply felt.
Despite the sun-soaked paisley vibe that it initially sets, Alvvays sidetracks itself from the “summer album” malady with a surprising amount of hefty hooks and sweet-and-sour lyrical contours.
It wears so many well-trod markers of pop punk that it struggles to rise from the backwash of young bands blasting power chords from scuffed-up Strats in ongoing homage to Stiff Little Fingers and the Queers.
While their may be nothing quite as earworm-worthy as “Bulletproof” on this album, she makes a strong case for an artist to keep listening to looking into the future.
Here, Jackson's attempts at mixing carefree sauntering with emotive bursts leads to a 'win some, lose some' situation.
For all Jackson's personal struggle and exploration, Paradise feels like a safe record, calibrated for the comfort of an imagined audience, working at its best when it becomes almost invisible—the accessory to the experience and not the experience itself.
Still a pop record at the end of the day, the album is not without its share of weak lyrics.
On La Roux's second LP, her vintage synth-pop magnificence (see 2009's hit "Bulletproof") has warmed into the sort of electro-disco drama you imagine the Daft Punk robots blasting as they cruise down Highway 1.
Whilst the singles might not be as big as 'Bulletproof' or 'In for the Kill', Jackson is offering up something much more substantial and satisfying this time around.
Trouble in Paradise proves Jackson is still better than many of her contemporaries when it comes to making fizzy electro-pop.
Trouble In Paradise somehow wins in a way that deems the comparison to its predecessor a moot point. Rather than drafting in its momentum, Trouble sets off on a new path entirely because there’s no other path to take.
She's abandoned the intimacy of a lonely girl and her machines for full-band funk, and where her vocals had been dry and often solitary, here they're overdubbed into an airy choir resembling that of Tina Weymouth and her sisters of the Tom Tom Club.
Even taking into account the creative tensions that created it, though, ‘Trouble In Paradise’ is her most exciting, and immediately likeable work yet.
There’s a notable evolution here, and we see the lone Jackson strive for something you can sink your teeth into over the course of a few days, weeks, month, rather than something you can insufflate at a club in the space of a few minutes.
Despite pushing the sound of LA Roux forward from the debut, Trouble In Paradise shares its hit packed qualities.
It's been a tortuous half-decade that's found Jackson riven with anxiety in the aftermath of her debut, to the point where she couldn't even sing, but she comes out reborn.
The overall result is just fabulous: if this album doesn’t become the soundtrack of your summer, you’ll be missing out.
Release Date: November 22, 2010