We may be cursed to be in the midst a global pandemic, buffeted by all of its stresses and pain, but everyone knows that art provides succour, that music is the most reliable balm.
For many there is further significant comfort to be drawn from the knowledge that Paul Weller is in the midst of an unbelievably prolific purple patch. Paul Weller will not let us down when we need him most, as evidenced by his most recent single, “Cosmic Fringes.”
On May 14, Paul Weller releases his 16th solo album since his 1992 self-titled debut, which comes in just under 12 months following June 2020’s magnificent, UK chart-topping On Sunset.
It’s not hyperbole to state that this new album, titled Fat Pop (Volume 1), is among his most compelling collections. It’s an absolute scorcher. Paul heralds the new album with a video for “Cosmic Fringes.”
Watch the official music video for “Cosmic Fringes” by Paul Weller on YouTube:
During spring last year, after his tour dates were postponed, Paul Weller needed something else to focus on. With many ideas for new songs stored on his phone, Paul started to record them on his own with just vocals, piano and guitar which he’d send to his core band members (drummer Ben Gordelier, Steve Cradock on guitar and bassist Andy Crofts) to add their parts. Despite it being strange not being together, it kept the wheels rolling and sanity prevailing. The band reconvened at Paul’s Black Barn studio in Surrey when restrictions were lifted to finish the work with the shape of the album becoming clear to all.
Fat Pop (Volume 1) — Paul adding the “Volume 1” to keep options open for a second volume in the future — is a diverse selection of sounds. No one style dominates. There’s the synth-heavy, future-wave strut of “Cosmic Fringes,” the stately balladeering of “Still Glides The Stream” (co-written with Steve Cradock), the chunky percussive groove of “Moving Canvas”(a tribute to Iggy Pop no less), and the kind of dramatic immediate pop symphonies on “Failed,” “True,” and “Shades of Blue” with which Paul Weller has hooked in generation after generation of devotees.