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Posted 23 October 2013 15:52


Supreme Being

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http://www.shieldsgazette.com/what-s-on/music/album-review-james-blunt-moon-landing-1-6175652

The Shields Gazette (UK)
Published on 23 October 2013

STILL one of the UK’s biggest artists, James Blunt has enjoyed two No 1 albums, shifted more than 18 million worldwide and seen his debut, Back To Bedlam, crowned the highest seller of the ‘00s.

Sticking diligently to the same folk/pop template, Moon Landing is another that’s sure to fly off supermarket shelves - but that can’t mask the fact that, like its predecessors, it’s insufferably bland.

Inoffensive to the point of being offensive, it carries all the emotional weight of a soggy dishcloth, effectively wringing dry a formula already yielding scant results, at least from a creative perspective.

On TV and radio, Blunt comes across as charming, funny and thoroughly likable, but songs like Heart To Heart and Always Hate Me are stark reminders that much of his music is indefensible. 4/10. AW

Post #240597
Posted 23 October 2013 16:00


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The CD Critic is an independent Blog for music reviews. Run by Gareth Watkin, The CD Critic reviews upcoming albums by artists and bands either well known, or in the independent scene. Gareth Watkin writes all his reviews himself, and in his own time purely for his own enjoyment. Reviews are purely the opinion of Gareth Watkin and do not express the opinions of anybody else.

http://thecdcritic.wordpress.com/2013/10/22/moon-landing-james-blunt/

Posted on October 22, 2013 by thecdcritic

In some ways the music of James Blunt is a little like marmite. There are those who like it, and those who absolutely hate it. Regardless though, at the core of every James Blunt song is simply the soul of a man who is writing music because it’s a passion for him, and because it comes easy to him. On Blunt’s fourth album ‘Moon Landing’, we can see much of this natural style of song-writing again, as well as even more maturity than what was present on Blunt’s previous two albums. At the very core of ‘Moon Landing’ is a selection of songs that make up a fairly strong album, ranging from upbeat pop-tracks to the more somber downbeat ones that aren’t unbeknownst of Blunt.

On ‘Moon Landing’ we see elements of Blunt’s fairly typical style of downbeat tracks that meander around delicate instrumentals, which contrast somewhat with a few fairly upbeat tracks present on the album. (or at least upbeat by James Blunt standards). The whole album experience feels much more rounded and solid than perhaps 2010′s ‘Some Kind Of Trouble’ or 2007′s ‘All The Lost Souls’, with each song contributing nicely to the album, without there being a lackluster element. ‘Moon Landing’ seems to be a strong album by Blunt that doesn’t necessarily return to the roots of his debut effort, but rather elaborates on his ever maturing style. At times the music is enjoyable, and at other times, rather emotional and sad. It seems that some of the downbeat tracks present on ‘Moon Landing’ are in fact some of Blunt’s strongest and most enjoyable since his debut release, with a special nod to ‘Miss America’, James Blunt’s tribute to Whitney Houston.

Where ‘Moon Landing’ has its faults is in one or two songs sounding a little bit to gimmicky, with the creative ideas utilized for the songs themselves, not actually contributing much to the overall album. At times, Blunt seems to go one idea too far, with a much better idea being just holding back a little, and not over-saturating his own style with unnecessary gimmicks. The overall album seems to come across as one of Blunt’s better efforts in years, but it seems like these gimmicks are attempts to really push away the style from this debut effort when in fact, Blunt could benefit from simply utilizing its strengths, and the strengths from his maturing style.

Overall, ‘Moon Landing’ comes across as one of Blunt’s more stronger album efforts. Something about the album just seems enjoyable, with each song contributing nicely to the overall album’s shape and sound. It seems Blunt has come a long way since his debut effort, and now it really feels like it’s all starting to show. On a fair few of the songs on ‘Moon Landing’, it seems hard to imagine Blunt sitting in the recording studio feeling miserable as he records the songs. There’s a sense of enjoyment and fun that exudes from the songs themselves, presenting ‘Moon Landing’ as one of Blunt’s better album releases.

Album Rating: 4/5

Selected Songs:

Face The Sun
Miss America
Always Hate Me
Blue On Blue
Post #240598
Posted 23 October 2013 18:01


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This review is a bit old but it's nice to read positive words so why not adding it to this thread?

http://www.thebanter.co.uk/index.php/2013/09/james-blunt-moon-landing/

By ritchiem in CD Reviews, September 9, 2013

James Blunt is set to release his fourth studio album ‘Moon Landing’ on Atlantic Record this October 21st. Its been three years since we last saw a studio album from him when he released ‘Some Kind of Trouble’ in 2010 boasting one of his hit tracks Stay the Night.

Moon Landing is produced by Tom Rothrock, who worked with James on his multi-platinum selling debut studio album ‘Back to Bedlam’, and Martin Terefe.

I suspect that the new album will be a strong contender within the UK album charts when it is first released as the work that has been put into this album is incredible. James Blunt has already released a single from the album along with its music video. Bonfire Hearts was added to YouTube on August 28th and I must say, since its release it has been incredibly difficult to stop listening to it, along with other tracks on the album such as Miss America and Blue on Blue.

Every James Blunt Album has that one track that everyone will remember and then there is that one hidden track that everyone will learn to know and fall in love with. The one track from this album that will be most successful in my opinion is certainly Bonfire Hearts, its just fantastic! Always Hate Me, the ninth track from the album is James Blunt’s hidden gem for this album its incredibly easy on the ears and an instant classic for James.

The album has its strong up beat track that you cant help but tap along and feel the beat to but its complimented well with soft mellow tracks like Blue on Blue, the whole album has a nice balance.

Overall the album scores a strong 4 out of 5 from and it can’t be urged enough to have a listen to it if you can, its easy on the ears and strong on the mind – another success for James Blunt.

Post #240612
Posted 24 October 2013 13:01


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Thanks JBfan I really like that CD critic one seems like a good reviewer a lot of the critics just seem to like writing something negative because they get a chance to try and be humorous.
I do like reading reviews not sure why as music( like beauty is in the eye) is most definitely in the ear of the beholder. It is funny how Always hate me seems to either be loved or slated by critics in equal measures!
Post #240693
Posted 24 October 2013 13:30


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Just read a review by the financial times the last line did make me laugh have to say Am too dim to do links sorry JB fan can you help me out ?!
Post #240695
Posted 24 October 2013 14:38


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Thanks Alikerstina! The remark on "Sun on Sunday" is clever too, I'm sure James thought of it when he composed this song. Funny thing is I've never thought of the last line in such terms probably because I see him as a very simple and down to earth man living an extraordinary life.

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/fef76988-35f7-11e3-952b-00144feab7de.html#axzz2ie6isDcp

Financial Times
By Ludovic Hunter-Tilney
October 18, 2013

In tremulous high croon, singer tells of relationships going wrong.

Long before Mumford & Sons discovered the mighty power of the banjo there was James Blunt, the Old Harrovian cavalry officer with a stack of platinum discs and a hornet’s nest of haters. His fourth album is a stick to stir up the latter, from Blunt’s tremulous high croon to maudlin songcraft about relationships going wrong.

“Sun on Sunday” isn’t a News International takedown by one of its phone-hacking victims; instead it’s a piano ballad in which the singer pleads not to be given the romantic heave-ho. “Always Hate Me” isn’t a defiant two fingers to the critics; instead it’s a Coldplay-inspired anthem about an angry ex. The provocation reaches a peak on “Bonfire Heart”, a Mumfords-style foot stomper in which the man with the chalet in Verbier and the villa in Ibiza sings the heartfelt refrain: “People like us don’t need much”.

Post #240699
Posted 25 October 2013 20:28


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A short and sweet review from New Zealand.

http://www.chelsey.co.nz/entertainment/music/album-review-moon-landing-by-james-blunt

By Liam Butler

Liam Butler lives in Stoke, the cool part of Nelson. He has been reviewing books, movies and music for a bit of light relief since his student days.

James Blunt launched his career with the multi-platinum selling Back to Bedlam. So far James Blunt has sold 17 million albums due to his ability to touch hearts and souls worldwide. James career continues on its stellar journey in this his fourth album Moon Landing.

This album is the best James has recorded. He maintains his poignant singing and outstanding lyrics without tunes of tortuous angst of the heart.

Postcards provides four minutes and four seven seconds of musical heaven. It is a sincere, hope filled, light, love song. Written by James in conjunction with Wayne Hector and Steve Robinson the lyrics are tight and thought provoking…

”You know sometimes it’s hard to see.
Or say the words that torture me.
But inside I know exactly how I feel.
The things I can’t say out loud.
I’ll find a place to write it down.
I hope that they will find you in the end”

Tom Rothrock who also produced James’s debut album Back to Bedlam has expertly crafted this album. James’s diction is crystal clear throughout the eleven track, forty three minute CD. The lyrics are poetic and permeate the soul in a subtle yet powerful way that when you hear them again it feels like you are hearing good news from a friend. As a result listening to the album is a satisfying experience that makes you feel relaxed and happy every time you play it. Now that’s entertainment.

People who have found the sombre sounds of James’s earlier albums just too sad to enjoy will be grateful for Mr Blunt’s Moon Landing.

Post #240844
Posted 27 October 2013 14:49


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http://renownedforsound.com/index.php/album-review-james-blunt-moon-landing/

Renowned for Sound
Published On October 27, 2013 | By Evan Howell

Having sold over 20 millions albums around the world throughout the last decade of his musical career as well as conquering America, thanks to a little ballad known as You’re Beautiful back in 2005, James Blunt has returned this month with the highly anticipated studio album, Moon Landing, the fourth addition to his catalogue and the first since 2010′s Some Kind of Trouble.

Aiming to emulate the success of his Back to Bedlam debut, Blunt went back to Tom Rothrock, the producer of his first two albums. He was in the middle of recording Moon Landing when his acoustic version of Miss America, a tribute song to the late Whitney Houston went viral gaining Blunt further wide spread attention. When the Moon Landing’s lead single, Bonfire Heart was released earlier this year, it reached the Top 5 in music charts around the world – something that hadn’t happened for several years.

James Blunt Moon LandingJames Blunt seems to have matured and this is reflected in his lyrics, song structure and vision for this new album. It combines deep emotion (as usual with Blunt) and his signature smooth pop which is conveyed by heavy piano, light synth and calming vocals. Satellites is one of the more pop influenced songs contained on Moon Landing – it uses a basic electric guitar riff and drum pattern mixed in with a string section and piano. Blunt tries to make the chorus catchy but it sort of feels just a little flat and hollow for our liking.

Bonfire Heart was the first single to come out of Moon Landing and it’s reminiscent of the folk/acoustic music genre which includes the likes of Mumford & Sons, Angus & Julia Stone and more recently, Passenger. Blunt taps into this genre on this track and though t’s risky territory for anyone that is a pop artist more renowned for his heart breaking/heart warming songs to venture within, he masters it with ease and the outcome is a radio-friendly and memorable hit to usher in this brand new album.

The standout song on this album for me is Heart to Heart which has a full pop rock sound very similar to Matchbox 20/Rob Thomas. It’s catchy and contains a nice mix of different musical influences and styles and its a track that I predict we will be hearing on the radio very soon. This is followed by Miss America which sounds reminiscent to Wisemen from Blunt’s Back To Bedlam release and therefore welcomes in some Blunt nostalgia within this fresh collection of pennings.

Moon Landing shows a more mature Blunt who is willing to take risks to get back to the top of the charts again, even if that means doing less of the things that made him great but that is the sign of a truly great artist – someone who isn’t afraid to dabble in foreign musical territory for the sake of creating something bold and modern. Moon Landing is a fantastic new record for Blunt and one that we highly recommend is given a thorough listen.

4.5 / 5 stars

~~~

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I'm Evan Howell, I am 18 and love every genre of music. Firstly got into music when I was around 5 listening to bands like Jimmy eat world, Led Zeppelin, The who and Linkin park. Around 10, my brother introduced me to more heavy bands such as Slipknot, Parkway Drive, Four Year Strong and A Day To Remember. Since then I devoted myself to discover new bands in all genres. My role on Renowned For Sound is to produce kick *** reviews about albums, singles, gigs and anything else that needs to be discover! Hit me up and follow me on Twitter!

Post #240938
Posted 27 October 2013 15:07


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Sorry Ms Shepherd, but this review makes me yawn uncontrollably.

http://www.scotsman.com/what-s-on/music/album-review-james-blunt-moon-landing-1-3158249

The Scotsman - Scotland on Sunday
26 October 2013
By Fiona Shepherd
Rating: 2 stars

James Blunt has described Moon Landing as the album he would have recorded if his debut, Back To Bedlam, had not been such a mega-selling success.

Which is not to say he rejects the two albums he has made subsequently – he is grateful for the opportunity to record unchallenging works in comfy studios, you might say. His fourth album, however, is allegedly unvarnished Blunt, recorded mainly solo with only producer Tom Rothrock to bounce off.

In reality, Moon Landing, titled for its association with nostalgic memories, sounds pretty damn varnished and only a step on from previous albums in that it blandly hitches its wagon to some proven chartbound sounds. New single Bonfire Heart is one of several tracks which fit all too comfortably into the whimsical folk pop territory of Mumford & Sons and their even wetter progeny.

Satellites teams shallow ponderings on human connectivity with tasteful pizzicato strings and a light dusting of banjo, while the cutesy handclaps of Heart To Heart and twee ukulele ditty Postcards evaporate on impact.

Bones also fits well in the current pop market – and I don’t mean that as a compliment – with its banal, woolly sentiments and inoffensive chorus suited to the background hum of daytime radio, while break-up piano ballad Face The Sun attempts to liven up a dull affair by piling on one of those pseudo-soaring Coldplay finishes which signify nothing more than an increase in volume and blank assertion.

Surely any singer/songwriter wants to make music which draws in the listener and demands they pay attention to the story or the poetry of the lyrics? Instead, Blunt simply offers a number of other tracks which sound completely anonymous, even with his trebly Marmite vocals spread on top.

Miss America, inspired by the death of Whitney Houston, at least has a tad more gravitas as it marches towards its quasi-anthemic crescendo. Its typical Blunt chorus hook flies rather close to the classic Elton John ballads of the 1970s, while thankfully avoiding the mawkishness of Candle In The Wind.

Of the remaining piano ballads, Blue On Blue would not sound out of place on an early Rod Stewart album, while Sun On Sunday pulls off the double whammy of 
being old-fashioned and clichéd. Still, it’s a change from bang up-to-date and brain-rottingly formulaic.

Post #240939
Posted 27 October 2013 15:31


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http://www.sosogay.co.uk/2013/album-review-james-blunt-moon-landing/

So So Gay
Posted by: John Paul Lucas
21 October 2013

Review Overview
Vocals 2/5
Songwriting 2/5
Production 3/5
Consistency 2/5
General rating: 2/5
Summary : James Blunt shows tentative progression on his fourth album, but lazy songwriting and a still-grating vocal style let him down.

There's a certain kind of popularity that seems to inevitably lend itself to critical contempt. Call it the Dido factor. Or Keane theory. Or indeed, the Blunt paradigm. It seems that there's nothing more offensive than making inoffensive MOR music that routinely sells in the millions. After a certain point, criticising these artists feels not just futile (for Blunt's latest single is his biggest hit in years and this album will surely be a bestseller regardless of the reviews) but a bit churlish. After all, is he really that awful? By its very nature his music is far too modest to plumb the depths of the truly terrible, and the poor chap can't really help the fact that he sings like an emphysemic Bee Gee.

That voice is troublesome though. His falsetto bleating is both his strongest asset and his greatest Achilles heel. It renders his otherwise formulaic singer-songwriting style instantly recognisable, and it's almost certainly one of the main reasons 'You're Beautiful' pierced the airwaves and went to #1 all over the world, including America. But it's also a real struggle to take over the course of a whole album and unfortunately, on the evidence of Moon Landing, he hasn't developed enough new tricks to compensate for it.

On the other hand, when this album works the results are genuinely strong. 'Bonfire Heart' is his best single in years - despite being snubbed by the fashion-conscious Radio One, the jaunty-melancholy arrangement is bang on-trend in a chart landscape in which the likes of Lumineers and Passenger have scored some of the bestselling singles of the year. Opening track 'Face The Sun' is also very pretty, wringing genuine pathos from a fragile vocal and a simple piano arrangement that builds to an emotional crescendo.

Unfortunately, the rest of the album largely falls back on familiar 'drivetime' arrangements built around thunderingly obvious lyrical platitudes. 'Satellite's takes aim at modern technology and celebrity culture, but has nothing new or interesting to say on the subject, sounding more condescending than concerned in its depiction of a girl who's memories are all experienced 'through a high speed video screen.' Apparently none of it's real, if you can't feel. Powerful stuff we're sure you'll agree.

'Miss America' pays tribute to the late Whitney Houston in similarly insipid fashion. 'Always surrounded, but alone.... was the picture in the paper not the face you recognised?' There's no question of his sincerity, but this is the stuff of high school poetry, with a plodding, predictable arrangement to match.

A touch of self-deprecation and some unexpected dance beats makes 'Bones' a late standout and clear contender for future single status - it could be another hit for him. But this final third lift comes to a crashing halt with the genuinely terrible 'Always Hate Me', which is exactly as adolescent as the title suggests. By the time horrible Jason Mraz pastiche 'Postcards' kicks in, any residual goodwill has well and truly left the building.

At the end of the day, there is clearly a market for what James Blunt does. Not all music needs to reinvent the wheel, and you suspect he wouldn't attract half the ire he does if his sales had been modest rather than blockbusting. With all that in mind, you could easily start to feel sorry for him. But the fact remains that despite the title, Moon Landing is an album that shows flashes of promise, but never truly lifts off.

Standout Tracks: 'Face the Sun' / 'Bonfire Heart' / 'Bones'

~~~

ABOUT JOHN PAUL LUCAS

Part time freelance journalist and full time Swedeophile, John lives in Leeds and contributes to a number of websites including The Guardian, So So Gay and Popjustice. He also has his own website which is largely concerned with his ongoing quest to watch and review every Eurovision Song Contest ever broadcast. He is, unsurprisingly, single.
Post #240940
Posted 31 October 2013 15:34


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I won't complain at all about this short review.

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/361216

Review: James Blunt shines on new single 'Bonfire Heart' and video

Digital Journal
By Markos Papadatos
Oct 30, 2013

English singer-songwriter James Blunt released his lead single "Bonfire Heart" from his upcoming studio album "Moon Landing."

This marks his first album of new songs in three years.

Blunt co-wrote "Bonfire Heart" with Ryan Tedder, the front-man of the rock band OneRepublic.

Throughout his musical career, Blunt has been nominated for five Grammy awards, and if this new single is any indication of the quality of his forthcoming CD, he ought to make room for more honors, accolades and recognition in the future.

His vocals on this single are heart-felt and crisp. It is extremely catchy and radio-friendly. Instrumentally, it is an acoustic masterpiece and it should fare well on the adult contemporary and pop airwaves.

The music video for "Bonfire Heart" has garnered well over 6.2 million views on YouTube, and counting. The video seems to be a great deal of fun and Blunt is seen driving a motorcycle in it, taking photographs, as well as enjoying festivities.

The Verdict
I've been a huge fan of James Blunt's singing and songwriting since the release of his stunning ballad "You're Beautiful" back in 2005, and with his newest single "Bonfire Heart," he continues to amaze me as a songwriter, vocalist and instrumentalist. It garners an A rating. Blunt proves yet again that he is one of the most underrated artists in contemporary music.



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Posted 31 October 2013 16:50
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This is great to read jbfan, I couldn't really disagree with anything here.

I hope James reads more of these kind of reviews and ignores some of the others.
Post #241206
Posted 01 November 2013 16:01


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http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/music/album-reviews-october-2013-8859042.html

Evening Standard
25 October 2013
John Aizlewood
4/5

As he’s impossibly posh, a former army captain and the antidote to the cutting-edge, it’s easy to take potshots at James Blunt. It’s also the lazy option and, more crucially, it’s never been borne out by his albums. His fourth is an attempt to re-capture the spontaneity and perhaps the hunger of his first. Like Back to Bedlam, Moon Landing was recorded in Los Angeles with producer Tom Rothrock, while Blunt stayed with his former patron Carrie Fisher. There are simpering and clichéd moments (Blue on Blue drowns in weedy self-pity), but, similarly, there’s craft akin to The National or Bright Eyes in the thumping Satellites, unashamed pop on Postcards and Bonfire Heart, while Miss America is a mostly mawk-free take on Whitney Houston’s demise. And the cold-eyed, autobiographical Bones is his finest moment since Wisemen showed there was more to him than You’re Beautiful. Whisper it soft, but James Blunt is OK.

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Posted 01 November 2013 16:11


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http://www.sfgate.com/music/article/Album-Review-James-Blunt-Moon-Landing-4944033.php

SFGate (San Francisco, US)
Published Thursday, October 31, 2013
Aidin Vaziri

At this point, James Blunt's chances of breaking free of his ubiquitous 2005 hit "You're Beautiful" are grim. That doesn't mean he has stopped trying. Working with producer Tom Rothrock, who recorded his debut, the 39-year-old British army vet turned singer-songwriter goes full Blunt on his fourth album, "Moon Landing." Spilling over with universal affirmations of love and longing, folksy guitar strumming, and deceptively low-key melodies, it chugs forward at a pleasant enough pace. The first single, "Bonfire Heart," could put him back on the radio, but the rest rarely makes for engaging listening, especially with a voice that sounds as if it has grown thinner with the passage of time. One small step for Blunt, and not much more.

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Posted 03 November 2013 03:40


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In my humble opinion, James' worst enemies are most of the music reviewers... but million of fans are going to prove them wrong again. Pffft!

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/albumreviews/moon-landing-20131101

Rolling Stone
2.5/5

By Mike Powell
November 1, 2013

James Blunt's ballads have always sounded emotionally lopsided, like inspirational speeches in search of a hard time. Compared to his past three albums, Moon Landing feels loose, almost rugged, though he still seems to bank on the fantasy of a world where most problems can be solved with a kind word or a warm bath. When he does beat his breast – like on "Bonfire Heart" or "Bones" – he does it gently. To give credit where it's due: It takes confidence to be this sentimental, and Blunt probably doesn't deserve half the criticism he's inspired. His worst enemy is still his own voice, an agitated whimper that makes even tender lines sound strangely like complaints.

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Posted 03 November 2013 08:34


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What a t**t!
I felt compelled to leave a comment!
"And here's me thinking this was a music magazine...what a load of s**t!!"
Post #241375
Posted 03 November 2013 09:11
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Actually I can't connect to any songs until I've watched them performed, preferably on stage or in a video.
But I have noticed that James's voice, at times, reached unexpected depthness.

What strikes me, when reading albums reviews, is that the guys seem unable to get rid of their first impression of a musician. Should James write and sing a Requiem Mass for a barytone, 9/10 of the reviews would read 'The sugary love song falsetto singer has done it again' and should Mika write and sing the same piece they would read 'The camp pop castrato is back with a vengeance'.
In all fairness, I don't know which I find more irritating, the reviewers or the fans who always Aw and Ah whenever they listen to a new album ...
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Posted 03 November 2013 09:53


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That's very provocative of you Beirut
I'm sorry you see me on a par with music critics
I'll try not to irritate you too much whilst blowing James' trumpet!
Post #241377
Posted 03 November 2013 11:07
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I wasn't referring to any fans in particular and being blinded -deafened ?- by love isn't against the law. So as far as I am concerned fans may blow whatever they want, trumpets or anything else -not talking dirty... well perhaps a bit . It's just that I don't belong in the same species : I remain critical of what/whom I love and in my experience it doesn't make my feelings and pleasure less intense. How shall I put it... to me loving any musician's music just because he/she wrote is slightly disrespectful : music deserves to be judged for itself, not for the guy who wrote it.

Btw, I will never see fans on a par with unprofessional critics : at least the former aren't paid to air their opinion of an album .
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Posted 03 November 2013 11:33


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I don't see blind faith/love as a bad thing everyone's opinion is valid.
It annoys me when what should be a music critique turns into a pretty personal attack
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Posted 03 November 2013 16:20
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I"m afraid James shouldn't have boasted on Twitter about his willy getting caught under his feet : not so well endowed critics may become jealous and write petty reviews ...
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Posted 03 November 2013 16:41


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Beirut27 (03/11/2013)
I"m afraid James shouldn't have boasted on Twitter about his willy getting caught under his feet : not so well endowed critics may become jealous and write petty reviews ...


You're most likely right! You crack me up Beirut27... I love your great sense of humour and your witty comments. I believe that many of these music reviewers are biaised, exactly as I am but on the opposite side... Actually, I don't want to be neutral at all when it comes to James. I'm not ashamed to say that I love his work, not only the music, but ALL the projects in which he gets involved. I'm interested in many other artists' career but none of them reach the same level as James in my heart.

Post #241388
Posted 03 November 2013 17:13


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Good point Beirut it is usually men that write such shite!
Post #241389
Posted 03 November 2013 17:17


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Well done Aline! I sometimes am made to feel that it is somehow wrong to love more than James' music.
You can't help what's in your heart
Post #241390
Posted 05 November 2013 02:05


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James: please accept my apologizes for posting here these negative reviews. After having seen Moon Landing #3 today in the Top 10 selling albums in the world, we could all do a little dance around these reviews while raising our glasses with a big grin.

Q Magazine, Issue 329, December 2013, p. 103

James Blunt
Moon Landing

Atten-shun! Cap'n James Hillier Blount returns to the frontline.

After shifting 17 million albums across the globe, what now for former army officer James Blunt as LP number four hoves into view? If Moon Landing is anything to go by, then "more of the same anodyne acoustic and piano-led-pop-rock" would appear to be the answer. There's no hint of an artistic left-turn here. Co-written with such chart-topping kings of bland as Ryan Tedder and Steve Mac, Moon Landing is played with the straightest of bats - lead-off single Bonfire Heart is a generic Mumfords-style foot-stomper, while Miss America - a tribute to Whitney Houston - is his well-meaning but mawkish attempt at Elton John-style grandstanding. Blunt is likely to slip further from view on the back of this - but it's doubtful this supermodel-squiring, Ibiza-dwelling, multi-millionaire will worry too much. (2 stars)

Matt Yates
Download: Blue On Blue | Bonfire Heart
Post #241460
Posted 05 November 2013 03:54


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http://www.allmusic.com/album/moon-landing-mw0002566863

All Music Guide
3.5/5

Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

James Blunt may never live down the success of his first single, "You're Beautiful." It made him a star in 2004 yet it also pegged him as the kind of sad-sack singer/songwriter beloved of doctors' offices the world over, which may be enough to sustain a living but not a career. Blunt is savvy enough to realize this and he started to broaden and enliven his craft fairly quickly, abandoning the slow-footed ballads of Back to Bedlam for a richly textured pop that eventually gained some semblance of color by the time Some Kind of Trouble rolled around in 2010. Three years later, Moon Landing arrived and although its title suggest some kind of spectral scope, it's not quite as lively as its predecessor, preferring the exquisitely textured adult contemporary pop of Dido, but giving those intricately produced ballads insistent melodies and rhythms. Sometimes, Blunt's phrasing can lapse into solipsistic moans -- this is especially true when the electronics are stripped away and the tempos slow -- but when everything is relatively sprightly, the feel is surprisingly appealing, even though Blunt can't help but piggyback on styles that are a guaranteed rocket to the Top 40. This is most evident on "Bonfire Heart," a Ryan Tedder collaboration that pounds and stomps in the style of the Lumineers, and there are echoes of Maroon 5 in the octave jumps of "Always Hate Me," but these pandering lapses -- accentuated by an unnecessary tribute to Whitney Houston called "Miss America" -- do not detract from an album that is, by many measures, Blunt's richest and best collection to date.

Post #241465
Posted 05 November 2013 04:02


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http://www.bostonglobe.com/arts/music/2013/11/04/album-review-james-blunt-moon-landing/wlDDFpWUetIgZsQiGmAGcP/story.html

The Boston Globe
By Ken Capobianco, November 4, 2013

It now feels like a lifetime ago when Brit singer-songwriter James Blunt ruled the pop charts in 2005 with the ubiquitous “You’re Beautiful.” After falling off the radar on these shores, he’s back with his fourth record, but this is not the reinvention Blunt so sorely needs. The same problems that plagued his past work, including his breakthrough “Back to Bedlam,” bleed into these tracks. The songs are filled with transparent lyrical ideas and an arid musical mix. Most problematic, he shows very little emotional or artistic growth. Unfortunately, Blunt’s reedy voice is still an acquired taste. At times, he sounds like a vulnerable romantic poet (“Bonfire Heart”) yet elsewhere he can come off like the alley cat in heat making sleep impossible (“Always Hate Me”). His tribute to Whitney Houston, “Miss America,” is well-intentioned and heartfelt despite borrowing heavily from Elton John, and there are some sweetly rendered love songs (“Sun on Sunday”). Still, most of this is too wan to give Blunt a career boost. (Out Tuesday)

ESSENTIAL “Bonfire Heart”

Ken Capobianco can be reached at franznine@live.com

Post #241466
Posted 06 November 2013 02:15


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From a blogger

http://www.meriamber.com/blog/2013/11/radio-rambles-32/

You may know James Blunt as that guy with the really high voice, or more recently as the guy that has been trolling the trolls on Twitter, responding to his haters with short, sharp comments. But, I often feel like Blunty is not given enough credit for his work. This album, another shorter album pulling in at 11 songs, is an absolute masterpiece. The single Bonfire Heart as well as some other standout tracks like Miss America and Satelittes prove that he really knows what he’s doing when crafting his songs. There’s such beautiful twisting melodies and interesting lyrical perspectives that its hard to not be charmed by the set he’s created. In particular, James Blunt has made an interesting decision when it comes to the production and arrangements of his songs. He’s chosen to go a much more traditional route than other pop artists and uses primarily real sounds with some samples. A richness and grandness is often added through the addition of extra voices, such as the huge chorus behind Bonfire Heart, as well as through the mere grandeur of the themes he covers. It’s almost a breath of fresh air to be able to listen to a record like this amongst all the other songs out there and is a great record to both sit, listen and ponder over as it is to put on in the background while you read, study, cook or whatever. I hear through the grapevine that there may be a deluxe edition of the CD but haven’t seen one around, I’d definitely still recommend grabbing a copy of the CD as it is because I have and haven’t regretted it one bit. That and the space theme he’s got running throughout the album art and accompanying marketing, videos and such is pretty darn cool.

Post #241560
Posted 06 November 2013 08:41
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Thanks jbfan for posting all these reviews!
Some are nicer to read than others

In fact some make me strangely uncomfortable...
I question myself, my taste in music, my life...to hear that the music that touches me so immensely is bland, the voice that i love that gives me goosebumps is troublesome, the words about love and longing mirroring my life are cliched...makes me wonder, leaves me sad and full of questions...
I love and i hurt, i fail, am stupid and regret...i guess my life is full of cliches, has always been like that...
i haven´t grown emotionally either then...

But this is not about me only, i feel bad for James having given all his heart for this album, making himself so vulnerable by going public. I feel bad for the band, for musicians like Matt who put such thoughts, effort and dedication into this, all real artists, i feel, no respect for their work...no respect for people who appreciate all this.
On top to twist his words about people like us who dont need that much and connecting these with his villa seems to be intentionally mean.

I feel this is another case of James being so much cleverer and smarter than his critics who are looking for intellectual lyrics, emotional growth, a developing voice and thus forgetting what life is really about, made of little, simple things...for all we know life´s just a dream who the hell knows what it means...
Post #241572
Posted 06 November 2013 18:02


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I understand how you feel TheBlunties, I'm feeling the same. I'm always reluctant to post a negative review here and, to be honest, there are some of them written over the last few days that I didn't bother to add to this list. We know that music reviewers are never going to give him a break. It's good to read what James replied last night to someone during the Facebook chat:

Q: Do you ever get genuinely rattled by negative press about your records or other hateful comments?
A: A couple of bad reviews vs a few million people who like the album… It's hard to take the bad reviews seriously!

http://www.popmatters.com/review/176181-james-blunt-moon-landing/

PopMatters
By Brent Faulkner
5 November 2013
6/10

“I have never been a beautiful boy / never liked the sound of my own voice…” That autobiographical lyric is how British singer/songwriter James Blunt opens “Bones” from his fourth album, Moon Landing. When an artist possesses a truly distinct, pronouncedly different voice from the multitude, it can work beneficially or adversely. Many artists in such a position have experienced the sweet taste of success with a breakout single or album, only to later find themselves as “has-beens”. For Blunt, success came in gargantuan proportions with remarkable and ubiquitous hit, “You’re Beautiful”. Since earning multiple accolades for the ‘song that could’, Blunt’s career has cooled considerably - at least in the US. Blunt never been able to match the success of “You’re Beautiful” or parent album Back to Bedlam. While Moon Landing has some unique facets and cues, it doesn’t seem to aim for a new group of fans.

Moon Landing is a solid affair, though by no means describable as an innovative ‘tour de force’. “Feel the Sun” kicks things off more restrained than one might envision for an opener. After taking an antithetical approach through balladry, the cut expands into a fully-developed, soaring number. After reaching its peak, it cools, ending as subtly as it began. “Satellites” contrasts with more of a ‘groove’, which sounds incredibly crisp within the production. The sound still trends conservative, but with a dash of the ‘tongue-in-cheek’, giving Blunt more of a lighthearted persona. The chorus adheres to ‘pop guidelines’ with its big sound, where Blunt’s clear vocals sit commandingly atop the production. As for the songwriting, it’s both thoughtful and carefree, whether “She’s from a long lost tribe looking for the light…” or questioning life’s ultimate existence (“...For all we know life’s just a dream / who the hell knows what it means / stop the world and sing with me”).

Lead single “Bonfire Heart” is the main attraction for sure, with it’s folk-pop driven sound. Enthused, Blunt delivers memorable lyrical moments including “Your mouth is a revolver / firing bullets into the sky” and the less profoundly poetic “...I’ve been looking at you /for a long, long time / just trying to break through / trying to make you mine…” Schmaltzy? Definitely, particularly the chorus where “people like us, we don’t / need that much, just someone that starts / starts the spark in our bonfire hearts.” Another bubbly song with ‘heart’ in its title follows via “Heart to Heart”, which is similarly pleasant. The highlight is the call and response oriented format of the verses, which Blunts lead and background vocals trading back and forth. Neither “Bonfire Heart” nor “Heart to Heart” reinvent ‘love’ or the pop song, but are enjoyable.

“Miss America” continues to show off Blunt’s nuanced pipes. Beginning more restrained, by the bridge, things have grown considerably. The lyrics continue to be ‘dramatic’, specifically “Does another voice sing in heaven’s choir tonight / to fill the silence left behind / and I don’t know what goes on in your mind / I’m sure it’s enough to make me cry…” Definitely one sensitive dude, that’s for sure! His vocals don’t shine as commandingly on “The Only One”, where the balance between production and lead vocals seems a bit off. He atones vocally on “Sun on Sunday”, even if the slower tempo makes the beautifully performed cut a bit of a bore. Sure, it’s chivalry at its best, but lacks some excitement and pizazz. Apparently Blunt and company received that memo, and went all-in on “Bones”. The rub? It is excessively overproduced, taking away from its good intentions.

“Always Hate Me” comes back down to earth, predictably peaking structurally during the refrain. Regardless of any predictability, the sweetness of Blunt’s falsetto is undeniable. “Postcards” and “Blue on Blue” prove to be respectable closers. “Postcards” tropical-oriented pop sounds a bit clumsy at first, but grows on you, particularly when a guitar solo arrives. “Blue on Blue” is more ‘tried-and-true’ Blunt, only with some added flair via harmonized vocals, strings, and a spectacular ending signaled by “I’m coming under fire”.

Ultimately, Moon Landing is another solid album by Blunt. Like many adult-alternative artists, Blunt finds himself trapped in that ‘middle-of-the-road’ categorization. The biggest flaw of Moon Landing is it’s lack of forward-thinking artistry; it is not an innovative nor flashy affair. Because of this, the album should satisfy hardcore fans but may struggle to recruit fresh blood. Quibbles aside though, Blunt’s voice has lost none of its polish or uniqueness. Still an acquired taste? Of course.

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