Somebody should have a word with Paul McCartney explaining the concept of a ‘psuedonym’. I mean, I’ve just got his latest album, released under the psuedonym of ‘The Fireman’. It comes in a slipcase with the words ‘Paul McCartney is The Fireman’ on the front. Open it up, the CD’s in a wrapper, with a sticker; ‘The new album by Paul McCartney’. Inside, the sleeve has ‘Paul McCartney’ written on the front. Inside that, there’s a booklet with ‘Paul McCartney’ written on the back. Containing lots of pictures of Paul McCartney.
It’s a far cry (to reheat the cliché) from the first Fireman album, where the only hint of Macca rested in the publishing credit. That album wasn’t the easiest thing to listen to – it was like ambient music, but irritating. Like listening to endless remixes of a car alarm going off. The second album was equally anonymous, both creatively and musically; I’ve listened to it a few times but all I can remember about it is the photograph of a large-breasted naked young lady on the inside of the inlay.
What’s the third Fireman album Electric Arguments like, I hear you ask? Well, to stick with the psuedonym would’ve been misleading, as it’s a real Paul McCartney album - but made by the Paul McCartney who did Wild Honey Pie, McCartney, McCartney II, Rinse the Raindrops and Nod Your Head. Wacky Macca, freewheeling, experimental and spontaneous. It’s the album I’ve always wanted him to do. It’s random, messy, fresh, strong, catchy. It sounds massive; where Memory Almost Full and Chaos And Creation In The Backyard were tidy and controlled, this is banging all over the place. The aural equivalent of the splashy, colourful painting that’s used for the cover.
Now, how about another album from Percy ‘Thrills’ Thrillington...