(Another) Album of the Month – RICHARD HAWLEY “Standing At The Sky’s Edge”

I have mentioned RICHARD HAWLEY often here before, so I guess it won’t hurt to talk some more about him.  His seventh and latest album is a big departure from his earlier solo albums.  The crooning baritone is still there but the tasteful retro guitar work and lush arrangements are replaced with sweeping washes of power chords.  This album simply rocks harder than any previous RH album.  Perhaps his recent work with ARCTIC MONKEYS rubbed off, or perhaps it was time to crank up his cool stereo amplifier technique.  Either way, the results are very nice.  I’ve seen the album described as psychedelic and dense, both of which are fair assessments.  But, as on previous albums, the songs are still gorgeous and the new, rocking arrangements meticulously constructed by RH and co-producer COLIN ELLIOT only enhance them.  I still love Coles Corner (2005) and Lady’s Bridge (2007) and strongly recommend them to anyone because they showcase his unique style and songwriting.  Two excellent albums of beautifully crafted songs that evoke another era, both in production and performance.  But this new album, Standing at the Sky’s Edge, gives you an idea of what RICHARD HAWLEY would sound like if he were here today, recording in the modern world.  Oh wait, he is.

Check out the first track on Standing at the Sky’s Edge.  It starts off slowly and crashes in.  And if your patient, there are two ripping guitar solos to set the tone for what’s to come.

The rest of these clips are from a recent “Later with Jools” performance on BBC:

And this has nothing to do with the new album, but this is awesome:

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