MusicWeek ‘Slow Attack’ Review

Respected music publication Music Week has a small but precise review of ‘Slow Attack’.

All in all a reasonable approach and the reviewer seems to have a respect for Brett’s previous body of work but also for what he is attempting to do now, which is nice to see.

By Ed Miller

Now on to his third sans-Suede outing, the lonesome Brett is a far less bombastic character on record than those who remember him simply for Metal Mickey or Trash. Stripped-down production and instrumentation typified his previous album Wilderness and Slow Attack is of a similar vein.

Produced by Anderson with new writing partner Leo Abrahams, the album is inspired by cinematic themes and the experimentation of such bands as Talk Talk. Anderson is less personal here than on Wilderness and possibly for the first time in his career, his lyrics take a back seat.

Difficult to pigeonhole, there are elements of modern folk here, most noticeable on The Swans, while Summer is a peculiar song, extremely minimalistic but building to a beautiful crescendo of piano and woodwind, which is where the Mark Hollis influences really come to play. These more gentle arrangements confirm the artist’s own previous protestations that he would never write what he called another pop song.

And while you won’t find the big choruses that Anderson’s previous record labels may have demanded (this is self-released), there are nods to his more anthemic moments. The Hunted, reminiscent of Dog Man Star’s The 2 Of Us with its lush arrangement and backdrop of harmonious “ah-ahs”, is the best example of this, while Julian’s Eyes is uplifting and lends itself to the soaring vocals that typify Anderson’s ballads down the years.

One can’t help the feeling that Anderson still has the songs that might expose him to a wider public once again, but he appears to be happier without the pressure of that and exploring his craft beyond the 2 minutes 45 of what used to be called a hit single.

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