x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Music review: Brendan Benson’s You Were Right

Brendan Benson's sixth album is predictable and dependable.

Benson’s new album You Were Right – his sixth – continues his dependable streak.
Benson’s new album You Were Right – his sixth – continues his dependable streak.

You Were Right

(Readymade Records)

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If Brendan Benson was going to be a big deal, it would have happened a long time ago. The 43-year-old Detroit singer and songwriter released a couple of sparkling power-pop albums at the turn of the century, had Jack White enlist him in his side group The Raconteurs and even had the premier producer Gil Norton oversee an album. The fact is, Benson’s 1970s songwriting style, recalling the likes of ELO and T. Rex to early Elton John, is just not edgy or mysterious enough to warrant the adoration of peers such as Weezer and the late Elliott Smith. Benson’s new album You Were Right – his sixth – continues his dependable streak. There is more of a country and blues feel here. As of Tonight has him purring lamentations over some deft guitar work, while the bluesy Long Term Goal builds up from a smoky beginning to a stomping ode to slackerdom.

I Don’t Wanna See You Anymore is the highlight, a Memphis soul-fuelled anthem complete with a

horn section. It’s stirring and totally uncool, not that it matters to Benson now anyway.

sasaeed@thenational.ae

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