Album review: Paul Weller - A Kind Revolution

Paul Weller - A Kind Revolution (Parlophone Records).
Paul Weller - A Kind Revolution (Parlophone Records).

This album is the 13th solo effort from the man known as the Modfather, and it's another worthy addition to his ever-growing legacy.

He started work on it immediately after finishing his last record, 2015's Saturns Pattern, but it's a very different album.

Where that was a very experimental work, here he reverts to what he knows best - blending rock, R&B, soul, jazz and funk.

The musicians are mostly Weller's touring band, including mainstays Andy Crofts on guitars and Ben Gordelier on drums.

Long-time collaborators Steve Cradock and Steve Pilgrim also feature, while Josh McClorey, from '60s throwbacks The Strypes contributes guitar to three tracks.

The record kicks off in style with one of the standout tracks, the funky, upbeat Woo Se Mama, which features vocals from legendary soul singers PP Arnold and Madeleine Bell.

That's followed by lead single Nova, which I was convinced was Blur or Gorillaz when I first heard it on the radio.

There's some classic Weller in the more reflective Long Long Road and Satellite Kid, which hark all the way back to his Wild Wood and Stanley Road days.

The Cranes Are Back is a delightful slow-burner which grows on you with every listen, while One Tear is a soulful, mid-paced number, featuring the unmistakeable vocals of Boy George.

She Moves With The Fayre is the most Style Council-like song here, and features Robert Wyatt, who Weller managed to coax out of retirement, on vocals and trumpet.

Like most records, A Kind Revolution has high and low points, and tracks you might skip, depending on your mood.

But it's testament to Weller's staying power and songwriting prowess that at 58 he's still relevant, even if he's not the angry young man who made his first LP with The Jam 40 years ago.

Dad rock it might be, but Weller doesn't make bad albums, and don't you wish your dad was as effortlessly cool as him? 7/10.