Edwyn Collins – ‘Understated’

Our rating:

Time and circumstance have not blunted the abilities of a pop national treasure

Something of a double-edged sword, so-called national treasure status. Are people interested in your creative output or just… well, your continuing existence? Edwyn Collins, while not quite Shirley Bassey, is arguably a pop national treasure, more so since a near-fatal brain haemorrhage eight years ago. This is the 53-year-old’s second post-recovery album, and lyrics like “I’m so happy to be alive” (‘Forsooth’) are sobering in their humility. Musically, the Scot still delivers a choppy take on ’60s-vintage soul and guitar pop, as he did fronting Orange Juice three decades ago. Time and circumstance have not blunted his abilities, and ‘Understated’ is lyrically empathetic, musically emphatic.

Noel Gardner

Details

Record label: AED
Release date: 25 Mar, 2013