Keep It Simple

Van Morrison

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Van ‘The Man’ Morrison has a released a new CD, Keep It Simple. As he says of the title track “…let’s hope we can get back to something simple, otherwise we’re screwed.” and though I’m not so sure if I agree with him — or really even know what he means (Mr. M has been quite the elusive fellow in his career, to say the least) — I do agree he’s keeping it pretty simple on this 11-track CD.

Released on Lost Highway, one of the last singer-songwriter independent labels left, this self-produced new CD of Morrison’s relies a lot on his blues/country interests. I truly respect a guy like Van Morrison, writing all the songs here and producing, but I’m not so sure we’re hearing anything on Keep It Simple we haven’t heard before from this legend.

First and foremost, Morrison has still got the pipes. No matter where you have been with this guy in his career — from his beginnings with Them to his early solo hits of Tupelo Honey and Moondance, right on through to his duets with the likes of Elvis Costello and his sometimes less-then-stellar live performances — Van Morrison has retained his perfectly soulful voice and unique songwriting skills. On songs like “School Of Hard Knocks” and “That’s Entrainment,” he uses his most distinctive instrument on cleverly written tunes. It really is a treat to hear a guy slightly older than the spate of recent Josh Grobans and all those other youngsters still able to sing like this.

Songs like the aforementioned “That’s Entrainment,” as well as the snappy (and for my money best tune here) “Don’t Go To Nightclubs Anymore,” show off Morrison’s gift as a lyricist. In fact, “Nightclubs” might be the best attempt he has ever made at poking fun at himself, and it works like a charm. Other highlights include the gospel of “Song of Home,” the angelic “Lover Come Back,” and the blues opener “How Can A Poor Boy?” feature the simple configuration of organ, drums, guitar, harmonica, bass and backing vocals.

When it comes to Van Morrison, you need to let his music wash over you. It’s best to let his voice take you where it will; don’t fight it. It’s kind of like being on a raft sluicing it’s way downstream, the destination not nearly as important as the undulant ride (how’s that for waxing poetic, huh?). Keep It Simple is just such a ride, a solid record from a legend, maybe a little light on surprises, but then again when you’re riding along with Van Morrison, you really don’t need surprises.

~ Ralph Greco, Jr.

Bookmark and Share

 

Rock News

Google Ads

ELP - Fanfare 1970 - 1997

ELP

David Gilmour - Pompeii


 

Follow Vintage Rock @

Search

VintageRock.com Book!

NEW BOOK COLLECTS
25 INTERVIEWS WITH
VINTAGE ROCK LEGENDS!

book

CELEBRATE 20 YEARS
OF VINTAGEROCK.COM!

CLICK HERE TO ORDER
YOUR COPY TODAY!

Newsletter

Newsletter


Receive HTML?

BCCIV

bcciv

Amazon's Essentials