Monday, 8 June 2009

Review: Paolo Nutini - Sunny Side Up

Paolo Nutini until just a few days ago was nothing more than a familiar name to me, but after being recommended to me a few times I decided to hear his new album "Sunny Side Up" to hear what's the whole fuss about. I can only say: Interesting! I didn't expect for a man of his age to have such a powerful voice with which he actually tells stories of here and there.

Getting back to the album itself, "Sunny Side Up" despite being in the folk-rock niche explores various styles, favoring blue-eyed soul, bluegrass and neo-folk. Nutini draws inspiration directly from his music upbringing in Scotland and to some extent demonstrates his fascination from American folk music, which has most certainly played a major role. Don't worry "Sunny Side Up" is no country album, released by a Scott dying to be out there on a rodeo. The record is more of a tribute to Americana with the strong fundamentals of the European neo-folk scene.

I just can't agree with the annoying comparison to James Morrison, who despite all the efforts is nothing more than a mere copycat of James Blunt. Gosh, are they brothers or what? "Sunny Side Up" is the final proof that the two don't share the same music bed! Back to Nutini, although his sophomore effort is seen by some as a disappointment and the singer himself blamed for losing track of his own style, "Sunny Side Up" is a melodic experiment curving in fresh wood with the final accomplishment visible only in your mind.

I personally don't see this album as anything close to failure or waste of talent, as it is a manifestation of diversity, emotional landscapes and stories of sadness and happiness, of the strive for a pastoral life deep in the bushes of love. Apart from the few flops here and there "Sunny Side Up" is easily a fine folk piece with hopes and despairs, with maturity and childishness, with Europe meeting America for a dance under the stars.

Songs to hear: "Ten Out of Ten", "Growing Up Beside You", "Tricks of the trade" and "Pencil Full of Lead"

Personal rating: 7 out of 9