When: Sat., June 2, 10:30 p.m. 2012
I recently read a review of Coldplay in which the writer suggested that the band’s big trick — and biggest shortcoming — has been to ratchet up the sense of emotional drama in song after anthemic song, while keeping the listener completely in the dark about whatever it is the protagonist is so nobly struggling to overcome. Then I listened to Matthew Perryman Jones’ new album, Land of the Living. He applies anthemic Britpop technique far more tastefully than its foremost practitioners. It’s to the Ten out of Tenn fixture’s credit that the varied songwriting and arrangements only swell to Coldplay-esque heights when the moment seems right. He’s working with a rich palette: Rumi, Van Gogh and Daniel Lanois according to the bio, and, to my ear, evocative literary imagery and a rich range of human emotion. It’s the sort of high-concept pop that’s not impenetrable, but exhilarating.