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Primal Scream Beautiful Future Review

Album. Released 2008.  

BBC Review

25 years, nine albums and an ever-growing fistful of classics on, there's still no...

Ian Wade 2008

For a band that has released not one but two decade-defining albums (1991's Screamadelica and 2000's XTRMNTR) Primal Scream really deserve a lot more love and respect than they get. Sure, there have been moments when they've musically shot themselves in the foot and even the most ardent fan would find it hard to defend some of Bobby Gillespie's more, um, memorable lyrics, but for sheer enthusiasm, energy and belief in the power of rock 'n' roll, along with being the best live band in Britain, they cannot be beaten.

Mostly produced by Peter, Björn and John's Björn Yttling, this ninth album sees little of the old school rockin' and not really much in the way of the shrieking sonic voyaging that are the hallmarks of your typical Scream album. Instead, it's being billed as the band's 'pop' album, full of 'sugar coated bullets'. To drive this point home further, some tracks were even recorded in the studio where Abba made Dancing Queen. This is evident in the album's opener and title track, where a lightness of touch (and bells) make it one of the most pop moments they’ve ever done – disregarding for a moment the bit about ''bodies hanging from trees''.

Other stand-out tracks include the more driving rockout of Paul Epworth-produced single, Can't Go Back, the slinky dirty-Chic groove of Uptown, alongside the album's three collaborations; I Love To Hurt, with CSS' Lovefoxx making for a somewhat seedier Je'taime; Queens Of The Stone Age's Josh Homme on psychotic album closer, Necro Hex Blues; and folk legend, Linda Thompson, on the rather lovely cover of Fleetwood Mac's Over & Over. Beautiful Future's rosy glow only dims briefly with the slightly rubbish Ringo Starr-alike, Zombie Man, otherwise it's magic all the way.

25 years, nine albums and an ever-growing fistful of classics on, there's still no band like them. And on this evidence any pretenders should hold off on the applications to take over for now. Here's to a beautiful future...

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