Kisses on the Bottom
Rating: *** 1/2
Paul McCartney will turn 70 years old in June of this year. In those 70 years, he has spent 50 years in the music business. This includes being a member of the Beatles, a member of Wings, and a solo artist. The average music listener will know McCartney as a great singer/songwriter not only in rock music but in music in general. McCartney has also attempted classical music (i.e.: Thrillington and Ocean’s Kingdom) and even experimental music (i.e.: McCartney II and the Fireman albums). For McCartney’s new album, Kisses on the Bottom, sees McCartney going back to the music that his parents listened to. This is also some of the music McCartney would play and sing with his father, who was a musician himself. Much like Rod Stewart, McCartney has dabbled in the American songbook but has picked some little lesser known songs. Kisses On The Bottom is another one of Paul’s “different” albums but it’s one that he’s wanted to make for years. While it may not be the Paul McCartney we’re all familiar with, Kisses on the Bottom is still a very unique album.
“I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter” is a very good way to open the album. Right from the start, you know this is going to be a strange album. Basically, all of the songs may sound the same probably because of the bass and drums. The opening track is actually really nice and Paul’s vocals are good. Personally, I enjoy Paul’s rendition of “It’s Only a Paper Moon”. Paul hasn’t really added anything to the song except maybe slowing things down a bit. Speaking of which, the songs are all pretty slow but it’s not as bad as it sounds. In fact, there are a few songs pick up tempo. An example of this would be “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate The Positive”, which is very upbeat and Paul’s singing is really good again. At nearly 70 years old, Paul’s voice nowadays isn’t the same as it used to be but don’t get me wrong: he can still sing. Just listen to the track “My Valentine”, which also happens to be only one of the two tracks that is an original composition (the other being “Only Our Hearts”). Paul’s vocals are just pure and upfront to the listener. Eric Clapton is also playing guitar on “My Valentine”, which does spice the track up. It’s smart on Paul’s part that this is the lead single because I think it’s the best song from the album. Other highlights include “The Glory of Love”, the somewhat silly “My Very Good Friend The Milkman”, and Paul’s rendition of “The Inchworm” from Hans Christian Andersen.
Overall, Kisses on the Bottom is a very good album from Paul. I think it may be one of those albums that gets better with every listen. Luckily, Paul said he won’t be doing again or do any overkill like Rod Stewart did. I would like to hear another regular Paul McCartney album sometime soon. His last great one, in my opinion, was 2005’s Chaos and Creation In the Backyard. Still, this will do for now.