Album Review: Jim Kerr – Lostboy

By on Tuesday, 13th July 2010 at 2:00 pm

First things first, for those who were expecting something musically different from singer Jim Kerr, don’t hold your breath. That said, his solo album “Lost Boy! AKA Jim Kerr” isn’t a total disappointment. Rather, it’s just, well, floating on the same wave as Simple Minds were three decades ago. Again, that’s not a bad thing. Makes you wonder, though, what compelled Kerr to stamp out a solo record in the first place?

Like those glorious songs that Jim crooned about some 30 years ago, there are plenty of references of the world issues, human rights and a crumbling earth. This time around, however, it comes across as a little bit contrived. And as much as he may have wanted to create “something without past glories to depend on”, it’s seems as though he held the rewind button longer than he might have realized.

Album opener “Refugee” for example is a gritty number that kicks off with a chaotic bliss of guitar rock and Kerr’s vocal prowess is proudly worn in the shape of a heart on his ripped sleeve. Veteran finds will find it be a nice, grungy opener, while those of the casual variety will probably consider it to be cheesy-rama.

Moving along, the album slides into a throwback song of Kerr’s “Alive and Kicking Years” with “She Fell In Love with Silence” and single “Shadowland”. Both tracks carry infectious overtones and sweet melodies, and perhaps some subtle nostalgia. It’s seems as though Kerr can’t get past his days when he shared the singer/activist stage with Bono and the legendary Michael Hutchence, as both songs indirectly seem to reflect on a bygone era and deny less of the limelight today.

“Remember Asia” reflects also reflects a nod to the past with it anthemic bursting, while “Solomon Solohead’ carries the same gritty chugs as “Refugee.” What’s more, “Red Letter Day” reflects all-out groove beats with a riff that is sure to make even the most cynical listeners cut some rug.

Just as with Simple Minds albums in general, the songs on Kerr’s debut never grate or grow tiresome. Sure, the LP may seem a little too safe, given Kerr’s lack branching out further than he could have. Yet, there is something reassuringly familiar about Lost Boy’s work. Perhaps it’s more of testament album of calling out to the past with the hope of being found again. Whatever the case, Lostboy! proves to be a good album for new listeners and even better for those die hard Simple Minds fans.

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