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Beatle-esque In A Good Sense

World Party
(The Enclave)

Karl Wallinger has admitted several times that the Beatles are a big influence in his music. He's even reportedly covered the entire White Album, but keeps the tapes locked away in his own collection. Unlike Oasis, who flagrantly borrow lines and references, Wallinger is a bit more subtle in his approach. Whereas past albums had flashes of inventiveness, this newest outing is 15 songs of near-greatness.

The great thing about the album is that there really aren't any songs that stick out as being bad. The styles change rapidly and quite a bit through the course of the album, but it never becomes repetitive or boring. The album busts out with the sing-along "It Is Time" and never looks back. Whether it is the piano-driven "She's The One" or the funky "Strange-Groove," every song has its own little style and story. "Hercules" is almost a free-form jam session, but still manages to come out as cohesive. If you thought "Ship Of Fools" was catchy, you'll find about 5 others on this album alone that hold the same qualities. Definitely one of the better albums of 1997. Unfortunately, the Enclave label that the album was released on went bankrupt soon after the disc came out, so it's kind of a hard release to get your hands on. Like most rare things, though, it makes it better once you do get around to it.

Rating: 8.25