Electric Arguments

Electric Arguments
Composer: Paul McCartney
Conductor: The Fireman
Label: ATO Records
Release Date: 2008-12-17
Rated: NONE
Genre: Recording

This collaboration between Paul McCartney and producer Youth is bad news for fans anticipating the release of “Carnival of Light,” the rare 14-minute Beatles track Macca’s been talking up recently as too “avant-garde” for its time. If Electric Arguments is Paul’s idea of cutting-edge, let’s hope “Carnival” stays in the vault.

Reportedly the product of a studio session in which each of the album’s 13 tracks was written and recorded in a single day, McCartney’s third release (and the first with his actual name on it) under the Fireman pseudonym makes a powerful case for spending at least two weeks on any full-length album.

Blame the indiscriminate record-buying public if you want — the first time he shat out an album in an unreasonably short amount of time it was Please Please Me, after all — but “Nothing Too Much Just Out of Sight” sounds like “Helter Skelter” puking up Thunderbird, “Sing the Changes” finds the better-undiscovered link between U2 and Richard Marx, and if the soul-sickening “Two Magpies” isn’t proof enough that Paul’s voice has completely given out, “Travelling Light” sounds like a musical number rightfully cut from Paint Your Wagon.

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