If you don’t know who Paul Weller is, you may think that it’s a man in his midlife crisis, after a boring youth, asking what I am. Because, almost all the songs talks about it, with the exception of a couples ones, that talks about the love to his woman. Musically it’s an Lp that’s sound like Motown music, but without the sexy style of the black singers. Weller cannot liberate from the bitterness of the British music, and don’t have problem with that (as bitterness rises from the ashes of your youth), it’s a nice mix that fits very well and was use it at that time by others artists from UK who recorded successful LP in this style, like Simply Red and Jamiroquai (you can find some similarities).
Paul Weller homonymous LP it’s a collect of good and carefully arrangement songs, very equilibrate, although the first four songs are noticeable the best. A lot of guitars (three or four per song), nice flute arrangement, some sixties details and a remarkable voice works. Its music that your enjoy listen, its cool, calm and collected, but if you want to dance just do it. The music goes smooth between tracks, linked by the lyrics and a global musical concept from the first song to the last: soul with energy, sometimes with tranquillity, sometimes with honesty.
Now it’s time to remember who Paul Weller is: the old front man of the most popular British band of the punk era, influencing legions of English rockers that ranged from his mod revival contemporaries to the Smiths in the '80s and Oasis in the '90s. Before you think that it’s the same name but not the same man (jumping from punk to soul!), maybe causality, you need to know that between The Jams and this LP, Weller recorded a couple of disc with the band the Style Council, where he made and unsuccessful transition from the aggressive and noise sounds of punk to the gentle and neat sounds of soul music, a transition that finished when Weller broke up the group and lost both his record contract and his publishing deal After Polydor rejected the Style Council's fifth, house-influenced album in 1989.
Now we can declare that Weller was at this time (started of ‘90s) in his midlife crisis (always there to confuse and fool ya! – when you scared of living but afraid to die), trying to be the artist that he was, but without a plan: “tomorrow I’ll walk to the harbour and catch the first boat that’s coming in” (Bull Rush), just doing what he feels (here we go in this moment in time).
And now we can say that Weller leave his past and recorded a big LP, that after fifteen years still be in force, his voice it’s warm and expressive, and it’s necessary to mention that he recorded all the guitars and almost all the bass line.
Finally a couple of trivia data: you may think that last track on the CD has a hidden track, but not, it’s just a coda of the last songs. And if you take a look of the pictures of the cover CDs you may notice that Weller also influences the rock fashion of all the Britpop movement.