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Born in the U.K.

Studio Album by released in 2006
Born in the U.K.'s tracklist:
Swimming Pool
Born in the U.K.
Degrees of Separation
Welcome to the Overground
A Journey From A to B
Nothing's Gonna Change Your Mind
Promises
The Way Things Used to Be
Without a Kiss
The Long Way Round / Swimming Pool
Walk You Home Tonight
The Time of Times
One Last Dance

Born in the U.K. review

What it is Like Growing Up in the U.K?

Badly Drawn Boy, also known as Damon Gough, is a British singer/songwriter, performing indie music. His stage name is associated with a British TV show character, which he took after creating his own business cards, each one unique, with his nephew’s drawings on them. Damon’s career started in 1997 with the first 5-track album, the total amount of copies reaching 500. These were distributed among friends and relatives and are valued now at ?100 each by his fans. His first studio album The Hour of Bewilderbeast was released in 2000 and received a highly positive critical acclaim and a Mercury Music Prize (?20,000). The album is considered to be Badly Drawn Boy’s defining work. All Gough’s albums bear a touch of his personal experience. His album One Plus One Is One tells about the loss of a friend and his grandfather’s death, while his last creation, Born in the U.K. aims at disclosing personal growth of the artist and revealing the peculiarities of being an Englishman. Though it was released one and a half year later than it was planned, the new LP is a wonderful example of a positive spirit notwithstanding the period of creative stagnation.

Proud to be English

United by one topic, all the songs on the new album present Damon Gough’s musings about modern life, national culture and historical heritage. Of course, an Englishman cannot go without being a little too patriotic, but that’s what Badly Drawn Boy’s admirers love him for. But, nevertheless, some songs are not devoid of self-mockery, like the country-styled The Way Things Used To Be, and immense positivism and warmth, like the track Welcome to the Underground. The track Born in the U.K. discloses the essence of the modern British life, presenting a stunning mix of the National Anthem and Gough’s reflections of the Queen’s Silver Jubilee. Nothing’s Gonna Change Your Mind is a really emotional song with wonderful piano chords, that sound in every song on the album. The concluding track of the album is called One Last Dance; written in a waltz meter, it is a wonderfully melancholic composition that presents Gough’s reminiscences of being a kid back in the 1970s. According to the artist, he is proud to be English, and we can say for sure that England is proud too to have such a citizen. Badly Drawn Boy’s new creation is the quintessence of real British rock’n’roll, which is as dynamic as it is classic.

A More Extraverted Album

Being a real perfectionist, which trait of character is inherent in many people of talent, Damon Gough picked these album’s 13 songs out of 60 or 80 written by him especially for the album. Hence, the immense power and genuine quality of the compositions, presenting the best of the best of his creativity. The sound of the new LP is much fuller than that of the preceding ones, this time revealing the much deeper artist’s understanding of what indie rock is supposed to be. According to Badly Drawn Boy’s words, the new album is more extraverted and mainstream. Damon’s personal challenge was the creation of such product that could be accepted by a wider range of audience, without oversimplification. The artist doesn’t think it is acceptable to use choruses that people can sing along to. While reasonably believing in his own exclusiveness, Damon Gough manages to reach his aim, producing an album that sounds simple but does not loose its emotional depth. It seems that the artist fulfills any task he sets his mind on, and, even if it takes another several years to make his next album, it will still be worth a while to listen to.

(18.10.2006)
Rate review3.89
Total votes - 10


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