James Blunt
Some Kind of Trouble


1.5
very poor

Review

by Irving Tan STAFF
December 29th, 2010 | 53 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Ladies and gentlemen, Mr James Hillier Blount - also known as James Blunt (to his fans) and just plain blunt (to the rest of us).

ARGH, screw it. You know what - I think I've just got to hand it to James Blunt, for the man has just about proven himself to be one of the most persistent artists in modern pop music. I find myself saying this because Some Kind of Trouble actually represents his third attempt at trying to pass a hookless pop-rock album as worthwhile music. What's worse, it is neither inventive nor altogether different from his past works - in fact, it picks up exactly where All The Lost Souls left off, and immediately sets about making a right hash of things.

That being said, the initial signs were actually quite promising. In an interview for STV, Blunt declared that he was "tired of writing self-pitying songs...about poor old me", further adding that he personally desired to make songs that were "more optimistic". To illustrate his point, he singled out the song "Stay the Night" as an example of his apparent new approach to song-writing. If there was a point that Mr Blunt was trying to make then he actually made it quite well: the song in question is more than half-decent and reasonably enjoyable (although for maximum effect one should thoroughly attempt to ignore the shameless pilfering of lines from Bob Marley's "Is This Love" that occurs in the second verse). There is actual quality to be found in this number, which makes the eventual appearance of the rest of the album such a massive shame.

It only takes four minutes for Blunt to return back to his old haunts; hereafter, every song on Some Kind of Trouble follows a similar - and dead boring - template. Harmless, inoffensive strumming? Check. Pedestrian drums? Check. Deeply uninspiring strings? Check. The same dripping piano to plague every other track? Double-check. There are rare occasions where Blunt tries to mix things up a little - there is an electric guitar solo on "Superstar", for instance. Yet, you can tell it's all the same, calculated risk, and that never once does Blunt truly intend to leave his comfort zone. After all the pointless instrumentation come the songs' verses - those half-assed partial hymns that serve as nothing more than a weak excuse to put a few guitar chords to. Yet, even their mind-blowing banality is overrun by the reincarnation of the quintessential James Blunt choruses; do feel free to sample a few: there's, "She is dangerouuuus, she is dangerouuuus, I'm sure (woah!)/And she's all dressed up and knocking at my door (woah!)," from "Dangerous". Then soon after there's the rather tasteless, "If time is all I have/I'll waste it all on you/Each day I'll turn it back/It's what the broken heart would do," courtesy of "If Time Is All I Have"; the whole charade is finally brought to an end with album closer "Turn Me On", which apparently thought going, "Why get complicated?/You know you want to turn me on/Why get complicated?/You know you want to turn me on" was mankind's best idea since sliced bread.

Stunning. And let's not forget that all this is done with a voice that sounds like there's someone directly below Blunt, having a go at squeezing each of his nuts in turn.

Honestly, one can't help but wonder if the man is even taking himself seriously - it may be a couple of albums too soon, but all the signs are that James Blunt is slowly turning into pop rock's version of Nickelback. However, unlike those crass Canadian rockers - who have openly admitted that they will keep on making music the way they do it as long as it sells - Blunt appears to truly believe in the merits of what he does, and it is quite a sorry sight to see him commit to the cause, then limp from piece to piece with all the grace of an upended dumpster truck. Truly, such fervour can only come if it has the benefit of support; it is thus reasonable to conclude that Mr Blunt is still getting his strength from a source other than his own free will. In other words: until that support base is eliminated, the world will remain doomed to endure similarly mindless dirge from a reasonably talented man - over and over and over again. Until hell freezes over.

Unfortunately, there's not much we can do against the buying power of mums and lovesick teenage girls, is there?

Some kind of trouble this is, indeed.



Recent reviews by this author
U2 Songs of InnocenceThe Pineapple Thief Magnolia
Ty Segall ManipulatorLinkin Park The Hunting Party
Coldplay Ghost StoriesCaleb McAlpine All Things New
user ratings (27)
Chart.
2
poor

Comments:Add a Comment 
Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

This review may also be found on my personal blog (at the address http://snuffleupagush.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/some-album-titles-are-just-asking-for-it/).

Comments and constructive criticism are - as always - very much appreciated.

KILL
December 29th 2010


72280 Comments


james cunt

Digging: Throwing Muses - Throwing Muses

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 29th 2010


10663 Comments




Gtg, ill comment on this later. Can't wait to read.

Digging: Blut Aus Nord - Memoria Vetusta III - Saturnian Poetry

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Pas de probleme! Je t'aime, Xeno! XD

conradtao
Emeritus
December 29th 2010


2090 Comments


This was a fantastic review...such a fun read. Pos.

Scoot
December 29th 2010


17914 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

boring

Digging: Renounced - The Melancholy We Ache

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Thank you Conrad; I'm very glad (and greatly humbled) that you liked it =)

Jethro42
December 29th 2010


12627 Comments


''...all this is done with a voice that sounds like there's someone directly below Blunt, having a go at squeezing each of his nuts in turn''

Like James LaBrie? Excellent negative review. Ça va mieux maintenant? lol

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH; I won't run from it - I was definitely influenced by Jom's description of our legendary DT vocalist! XD

Je vais bien maintenant! :D

ConsiderPhlebas
December 29th 2010


6157 Comments


haha love this review. Was gonna do one for this myself but you've saved me from it, man.

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@ Phlebas: Yes, I altruistically decided to sacrifice myself for the greater good of Sputnik - better my ears suffer than you guys'! XD

That said, I have a feeling that your review (should you decide to go ahead with it) will have more sting than mine; no one bites like you can, man lol.

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

@ andcas: Don't. Lol.

@ Sonic: It's waaay too late for that buddy lol.

Captain North
December 29th 2010


6792 Comments


I used to be a fan of James Blunt. Decided to relisten to his older albums...what was I thinking?!

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

We are all young and foolish at some point in our lives...

Just be sure to repent.

pizzamachine
December 30th 2010


12572 Comments


What a scathing review! I applaud you sir Irving, great job! Seems like something I would write haha.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 30th 2010


10663 Comments


Your words are caustic in this review, and its all the better for it. Brilliant work mon ami.

Xenophanes
Emeritus
December 30th 2010


10663 Comments


Pos if that wasn't obvious

; )

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 30th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Hahahah thanks Pizz XD I also see what you mean in your comment - reading back, it actually sounds like I was channeling your chi whilst writing this piece haha.

But thanks again =)

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
December 30th 2010


16922 Comments


this was a really entertaining read...pos'd easily

Digging: Low Roar - 0

Irving
Staff Reviewer
December 30th 2010


7321 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

Thanks Xeno. Admittedly, I was actually reasonably angry at the fact that I wasted my time with this piece of trash of an album. And as if that wasn't enough, there's an aftertaste too. Bleargh.

Et merci un autre fois! :D



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy