Artist: Paul McCartney
Title: “Kisses on the Bottom”
Since the death of his first wife, Linda, Macca has seemed on a crusade to shatter any notions about himself.
He’s dabbled in classical, an album of 1950s rock songs, ambient electronic experiments as The Fireman, a moody collaboration with Radiohead and Beck producer Nigel Godrich and now, “Kisses on the Bottom,” a terribly named collection of pop standards.
It’s the first set under the former Beatles bassist’s own name in five years.
“Kisses,” which takes its name from a line in “I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter,” shows McCartney’s voice has held up incredibly well, but his wimpy, joyful vocals suggest a conscious restraint.
The production and arrangement of the music is lush and pleasant. It says much more about it that he teams up with Canadian jazz crooner Diana Krall and producer Tommy LiPuma than guest spots from Eric Clapton and Stevie Wonder.
It’s worth applauding McCartney for continuing to challenge himself in his 70s. However, that seems to be the target audience for this particular experiment.
Our Music Year is Daily Republic popular culture writer Nick DeCicco’s yearlong online review in 2012 of albums he had previously not listened to. The reviews will appear in print on their corresponding days during 2013. Reach him at 427-6966 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ndeciccodr.