Songs of No Consequence
First Appeared in The Music Box, July 2005, Volume 12, #7
Written by John Metzger
Itís been quite some time since Graham Parker has crafted an album that seethes with the fury of his latest outing Songs of No Consequence. Retreating from the country-tinged overtones of his previous effort Your Country as well as the singer-songwriter-oriented focus of many of his other recent forays, Parker successfully re-embraces the punchy pub-rock of his heyday without sounding as if he merely is trying to recreate his past. With a snarl that straddles the ground separating Bob Dylan from Elvis Costello, he invokes all the swagger of his youth as he mightily unleashes his customarily biting lyrics while taking tremendous pleasure in wreaking havoc upon pop-culture media (Vanity Press), rebellious teens turned middle-aged sellouts (Did Everybody Just Get Old?), and Clear Channelís monopoly of the airwaves (Thereís Nothing on the Radio). Backed by the decade-old, punk-pop outfit The Figgs, Parker undeniably has regained the edge that for far too long has been missing from his work, and whether dabbling in reggae (Evil), Stones-ian rock (Bad Chardonnay), folk-pop (Dislocated Life), or R&B (Ambivalent), he taps into a newfound sense of urgency that signals the sort of mid-period rejuvenation at which Your Country only hinted. Granted, throughout his career, his sardonic wit has remained intact, but with music that once again matches his rage, Songs of No Consequence easily ranks among Parkerís best endeavors.
Of Further Interest...
Elvis Costello / Allen Toussaint - The River in Reverse
Steve Earle - The Revolution Starts...Now
Various Artists - Why the Hell Not? The Songs of Kinky Friedman
Songs of No Consequence is available
from Barnes & Noble. To order, Click Here!
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box