It was originally released in Iceland to moderate critical acclaim but relatively unnoticed abroad. In the first year following the release, Von sold only 313 copies in Iceland. Following the band's popular international releases, Ágætis byrjun and , it was re-released in the United Kingdom in September 2004, and in the United States a month later. In December 2005, Von, together with Ágætis byrjun, were declared platinum albums in Iceland.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Paul Weller deservedly regained his status as the Modfather with his second solo album, Wild Wood. Actually, the album is only tangentially related to mod, since Weller picks up on the classicism of his debut, adding heavy elements of pastoral British folk and Traffic-styled trippiness. Add to that a yearning introspection and a clean production that nevertheless feels a little rustic, even homemade, and the result is his first true masterwork since ending the Jam. The great irony of the record is that many of the songs
"Has My Fire Really Gone Out?," "Can You Heal Us (Holy Man)" -- question his motivation and, as is apparent in his spirited performances, he reawakened his music by writing these searching songs. Though this isn't as adventurous as the Style Council, it succeeds on its own terms, and winds up being a great testament from an artist entering middle age. And, it helped kick off the trad rock that dominated British music during the '90s.
Strong undercurrents of British '60s pop influences, particularly The Kinks, run throughout the album. Most obvious is the cover of The Kinks' "David Watts", an album track off their 1967 album Something Else By The Kinks.
"Down In The Tube Station At Midnight" was one of the group's most successful chart hits to date, peaking at #15 on the UK charts, their biggest hit since "All Around The World", a non-LP single released between the group's first and second albums. It is regarded as one of Paul Weller's finest forays into social commentary: a first-person narrative of a young man who walks unsuspectingly into a tube station (known as a "subway" in American English) on the way home to his wife only to get beaten to death by right-wing thugs, reflecting the atmosphere of tension and paranoia amid the extremist skinhead violence inundating the headlines of the day.
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