Chaos And Creation In The Backyard Review

artist: Paul McCartney date: 03/21/2006 category: compact discs
Paul McCartney: Chaos And Creation In The Backyard
Release Date: Sep 13, 2005
Label: Capitol
Genres: Singer/Songwriter, Pop/Rock, Soft Rock
Number Of Tracks: 13
Sir Paul is an elder statesman now, but Chaos And Creation In The Backyard finds him in considered and tastefully restrained form, penning songs worthy of his finest hour.
 Sound: 8.7
 Lyrics: 7.7
 Overall Impression: 9
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reviews (3) 3 comments vote for this album:
overall: 8.3
Chaos And Creation In The Backyard Reviewed by: ridcullylives, on february 10, 2006
5 of 6 people found this review helpful

Sound: Paul, Paul, Paul. How do you do it? The man is a master craftsman of pop music. The songs on the record have quite a range: Beatle-y upbeat piano tunes ("Friends To Go," "A Fine Line," "Promise To You Girl"), melancholy/cynical/brooding orchestral pieces ("How Kind Of You," "At The Mercy," "Riding To Vanity Fair," which is downright nasty), the obligatory soaring McCartney ballads ("Too Much Rain," "Anyway"), the odd numbers that defy description (the very British "English Tea," the Latin-tinged "A Certain Softness"), and, most impressively, the understated, Blackbird-esque "Jenny Wren." Despite the variation, Macca never gets lost in the sort of stylistic schizophrenia that plagued him even back in the White Album days. "A Certain Softness" is Latin-tinged, but never actually crosses over into becoming a flamenco song. He remains fully rooted in the world of pop, but explores its boundaries like he hasn't for a while. I only gave it 9/10 for the one or two tracks I would truly classify as filler - the pointless "Follow Me" and the vapid "Promise To You Girl" (the title of which belies its lack of substance). // 9

Lyrics: Well, we're talking Paul McCartney, not John Lennon, so the moments of true lyrical brilliance are few, although most of the lyrics flow nicely and deal with heavier subjects than is standard fare for Macca. "Vanity Fair" is pure anger. "How Kind Of You" is either incredibly sincere or nastily cynical, it's hard to tell. The only place where the lyrics truly break down are "Promise To You Girl" (again, see title), "Follow Me" and "Too Much Rain" which, despite being one of the high points of the album musically suffers from lyrics which essentially are asking a person who is horribly depressed why he can't just "buckup." // 7

Overall Impression: It's sincere, so that's great. That's such a rare thing to get from Macca it's a treasure when it comes. Paul's voice and musicianship are still in fine form (oh, did I mention he plays almost every instrument on the album), and the few filler tracks can't drag down the near-brilliance of most of the rest. Buy it. You won't regret it. // 9

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overall: 8
Chaos And Creation In The Backyard Reviewed by: aussierocker, on march 21, 2006
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: The sonics on this album are well crafted and Nigel Goodrich added nicely to Paul's sound. It's melodic, complex sounding yet simple, heartfelt, lightweight, inspirational, emotional and meaningful. Paul McCartney was being challanged for one of the few times after the Beatles, he was made to work for the producer and the results are great. Paul uses many influences, you must view the accompaning making of DVD where Paul talks about these. // 8

Lyrics: Since his 1st wife died, his lyrics have turned more introspective and that is a great thing as there is less trite as more of his songs reach you on a level and you can connect with them. I believe Paul is writing some of his best stuff since the Beatles on this album and also Flaming Pie. // 7

Overall Impression: This album is better than most released that year. Paul has no equal, you are always guaranteed a high quality of musicianship, catchy melodies and a certain feel with a McCartney album. All of the songs are great, there are no real rockers which is not as big a drawback that most make it, this is a mood album and a rocker or two would have thrown that feel out. It is a consistent album, perhaps the most since Band On The Run. I really like "Jenny Wren" and "Anyway" which will stand up to anything he did in his solo career. I would buy it again if I lost it, Paul has not lost it at all. // 9

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overall: 9
Chaos And Creation In The Backyard Reviewed by: beatles_rock09, on march 14, 2006
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: This being a Paul album, I expected a more or less of a pop-ish album. Well, I was actully surprised. Most of this music may be labled as pop, but the whole album has it's own unique sound. I also expected a lot of piano, being as this is Paul McCartney. I was right. This CD is packed with piano. Almost every song, the piano is the main focus instrument. There are some really great songs on this album. "Jenny Wren" is like the sister of the earlier Paul song "Blackbird." "English Tea" is a very, very British gentleman song. More or less, the whole sound of this album is great, and I have nothing to complain about. // 9

Lyrics: Paul has always been a great lyric writer. Back when he was with the Beatles, he was a mastermind. Well, he just raises the bar again with this album. "How Kind Of You" has great lyrics, but you have to listen to it to get the effect of the words. The music really adds to the message. The opening song, "Fine Line," has great lyrics. The line "Come on brother, all is forgiven. We all cried when you were driven away" is what I believe to be a refrence to George Harrison (You die-hard Beatles fans may already know what I mean). Again, this album raises the bar for lyrics. Paul is a genius. // 9

Overall Impression: I love this album. In fact, I'm listening to it right now. I've always been a Paul fan, and I always will. This album was not what I expected, and that's why I love it. This is one that you'll definately be listening to year after year. I haven't gotten tired of it yet. The sound is great, the lyrics thought-provoking. Granted, back when the Beatles were making albums, Paul was making better songs, but I don't he has slipped so much as to say he isn't what he used to be. Paul still has it. // 9

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