As Is Now

( 1 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
If 2002's Illumination was a warm, laid-back record, Paul Weller's 2005 sequel, As Is Now -- a likeable but unremarkable covers album, Studio 150, appeared in the interim -- is its flip side, a lean, hard-hitting soulful rock & roll album. Not that Weller is returning to the sound of the Jam: he's still with the same band that he's been with since Wild Wood, anchored by drummer Steve White and featuring Ocean Colour Scene members guitarist Steve Cradock and bassist Damon Minghella, and he's working the same musical territory, grounded in Traffic, Humble Pie, '60s soul, and guitar pop. There may be absolutely no surprises here -- even the change of pace "The ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
If 2002's Illumination was a warm, laid-back record, Paul Weller's 2005 sequel, As Is Now -- a likeable but unremarkable covers album, Studio 150, appeared in the interim -- is its flip side, a lean, hard-hitting soulful rock & roll album. Not that Weller is returning to the sound of the Jam: he's still with the same band that he's been with since Wild Wood, anchored by drummer Steve White and featuring Ocean Colour Scene members guitarist Steve Cradock and bassist Damon Minghella, and he's working the same musical territory, grounded in Traffic, Humble Pie, '60s soul, and guitar pop. There may be absolutely no surprises here -- even the change of pace "The Start of Forever" is reminiscent of many of his gentler folky tunes, echoing Illumination's mellow vibe -- but for as familiar as As Is Now is, it never sounds lazy; it's a tighter, better record than most of his late-'90s albums. The closest antecedent to As Is Now in Weller's solo catalog is Heavy Soul. Like that 1997 effort, this is a straightforward, no-frills record, heavy on rockers and with few pretensions, but where that album could drift, this is focused and exciting, boasting a stronger set of songs and livelier performances, plus a greater variety of colors and textures in the production. Those subtle differences wind up making a huge difference in the overall effect of As Is Now -- on the surface, it certainly sounds familiar to what came before, but thanks to Weller's muscular, memorable songs and musicianship, it stands apart as one of his more satisfying solo albums.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/9/2008
  • Label: Universal Japan
  • EAN: 4988005521583
  • Catalog Number: 93568

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Paul Weller Primary Artist
Arlia de Ruiter Violin
Steve Cradock Guitar, Vocals, Group Member
Damon Minchella Bass Guitar, Group Member
Rosie Wetters Cello
Jan Van Duikeren Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Mieke Honingh Viola
Pauline Terlow Violin
Bastiaan Van Der Werf Cello
Steve "Supe" White Drums, Group Member
Paul John Weller Piano, Rhythm Guitar, Vocals, Group Member
Louk Boudesteijn Trombone
Benjamin Korman Alto Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone
Technical Credits
Paul Weller Composer, Audio Production
Simon Halfon Cover Design
Williem Friede String Arrangements
Joeri Saal Engineer
Paul John Weller Producer
Jan "Stan" Kybert Producer, Audio Production
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Solid Effort

    A very solid, late-era Paul Weller album, every inch the equal to "Illumination," which it greatly resembles, and yet charged with more passionate purpose than its rather stately, well-crafted predecessor. The record is sequenced interestingly: the opening trio of tracks, all of them hard-edged, guitar-based rocknsoul tunes, suggest a return to the sound of "Heavy Soul," then the record shifts gears with "Here's the Good News," a slab of piano-based New Orleans R&B that recalls such "Stanley Road"-era tracks as "Pink on White Walls," "My Whole World is Falling Down," and "I Would Rather Go Blind." Then the record settles down for a series of acoustic-based pop tunes that recall the middle section of "Heliocentric." The second half is equally eclectic, ranging from the "Sound Affects"-like dance number, "From the Floorboards Up" to the swirling psychedelia of "Roll Along Summer," which again recalls "Heavy Soul" by way of late-Sixties Wes Montgomery. The 7 minute "Bring Back the Funk," the album's penultimate track, recalls the acid-jazz underpinnings of Weller's magnificent solo-ear debut (the riff is actually lifted from "Here's A New Thing," a track included on the Japanese version of that album but replaced on the US and UK editions by "The Strange Museum"). A real standout for me is the quiet but whimsical 60s pop waltz, "I Wanna Make It Alright," which shamelessly borrows its melody from Nick Drake's "One of These Things First," much the way "Start!" refrenced "Taxman" and "A Town Called Malice" name-checked "You Can't Hurry Love." Weller still has some secrets up his sleeve, in other words, as he proved with "It's Written On the Stars" from "Illumination," and his Style-Council take on Bacharach's "Close to You," from "Studio 105. In short, if you're a fan, or if you have any of his other solo albums, you'll find more than enough here to justify your $15 dollars.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews