Primal Scream have provided no shortage of feints and parries when it comes to their musical direction over the years. Simultaneously straddling the ballsy blues that would have served an early incarnation of The Rolling Stones proudly or the indie kid dance crossover stylings that would inspire a good number of imitators in the years that followed. Returning with their ninth album there is evidence yet again that Primal Scream have no intention of standing still when it comes to playing the genre game. At the helm for production duties this time are Bjorn Yttling (Peter, Bjorn and John) and Paul Epworth (Bloc Party as well as his Phones moniker).
There’s the odd twinge of the familiar in place on the album but for the most part this is the band running on cleaner fuel than we are used to. There’s an aggressive pop sheen in places which should serve to familiarise the old school listeners (the single ‘Can’t Go Back’ being one example). Elsewhere they bring in some nicely restrained orchestral pieces and dare I say it step off the pedal a little (‘The Glory Of Love’). Could it be Primal Scream are mellowing with age, well in places I would say its a possibility but is that such a bad thing, after all these guys are rapidly approaching a more statesmanlike time in their careers. Nonetheless its not time to place them in the pipe and slippers fraternity yet. Listen to the dark synth led swagger of ‘Suicide Bomb’ and you see the Scream of old rear their head. ‘Zombie Man’ meanwhile mines their past stylings in a gospel blues style. Elsewhere there are contributions from CSS’s Lovefoxx and Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme, not to mention the unlikely addition of Linda Thompson (doing a Fleetwood Mac cover no less).
As a whole this could potentially be one of Primal Scream’s most accessible albums yet. A succession of pop gems that have been let out for the weekend wearing a succession of different outfits to vary the style on offer here. I have absolutely no qualms about recommending this album, first rate stuff. Its out now.