By Rob Jones
The Charlatans return with their best work for some time and the eleven tunes of ‘Modern Nature’ (BMG Records). This heavily funk and soul infused collection displays a famed indie edge and the recognisable Tim Burgess vocals ice the goods. However, this set is more Sly Stone meets The Rolling Stones cruising along with the sunroof down on a Californian highway. A strong selection of songs is stamped with mellifluous magic and it is impossible to step away from this record without feeling uplifted.
The Charlatans are an experienced band who has suffered their fair share of setbacks (with the deaths of band members Rob Collins and Jon Brookes to the fore). However, grief has made this act more intent on positive productivity and the ability to bounce back and deliver diligence is central to The Charlatans history.
On this occasion there are more than glimpses of brilliance as swathes of sweet, subtle sounds unfold To add to the core of the collection the lads can also throw in some Led Zeppelin ‘Kashmir’ meets Stone Roses ‘Second Coming’ style on the gargantuan ‘I need you to Know’. There are also the gems that are set to storm the stage and ‘Lean In’ has those classic components for the avid aficionado. Meanwhile, the charts should be littered with plenty of radio friendly tracks that deserve to be lauded e.g. ‘Come Home Baby’, ‘Talking in Tones’, So Oh’, ‘Let the times be never Ending’, ‘Keep Enough’, Trouble Understanding’, ‘In the tall Grass’, ‘Emilie’ and the list goes on!
The band marks the silver anniversary of their first recording but it is also congratulations on this remarkable recent release. Their past glories are renowned but ‘Modern Nature’ Tim and his team a credible future-and, as the 6 minutes 31 seconds of album centrepiece state ‘Let the good times be never Ending’.