I apologise for the lack of postings; I have been out of internet for a while and not been able to update this as much as I would have liked!!!
However I wrote this album review for Mr Hudson’s ‘Straight No Chaser’ recently as a short feature for a uni magazine project;
The loveable blonde from Birmingham brings experimental new sound to pop charts…
Mr Hudson, real name Ben Hudson has finally released his highly anticipated solo album after single ‘Supernova’ shot straight to number one back in the summer.
Although currently supporting Calvin Harris on tour there is no question that Hudson is a star in his own right. The singer song writer from Birmingham formerly experienced some success with band Mr Hudson and the Library back in 2006, after featuring on ‘Later With Jools Holland’. The band then went on to release their first album in 2007 entitled ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ which received strong reviews and national airplay.
A tour of several UK festivals followed, as well as a series of gigs that saw them support Amy Winehouse, The Police and Kanye West, leading to the signing of Hudson to Kanye’s G.O.O.D music label.
‘Straight No Chaser’ brings a timeless sound to our speakers, one that could transcend through all seasons. Whether you need something to listen to while chilling on the beach or just fancy a little bit of escapism in bed on a Sunday morning, this unusual cocktail of rhythms and basses will take you from the sun and sea to the set of a Paris rom-com movie in the middle of winter.
Written in just two months in a tiny flat in North London with a guitar, piano and a mattress that doubled for soundproofing as well as a bed, he documents an emotional journey that sounds like total joy.
Hudson’s harmonising vocals lay on a bed of crushing drum beats and electronic synths, mixed with acoustic melodies and a touch of RnB.
If one listens carefully you may spot an organ playing alongside a tambourine in the forefront of a dance soundtrack, typically like chalk and cheese and yet somehow Hudson seems to make it work.
Tracks like ‘Straight No Chaser’, ‘Knew We Were Trouble’, ‘Stiff Upper Lip, and ‘Everything Is Broken’ are the strongest of the album, giving us some catchy pop choruses to whistle along too while we walk.
The weaker tracks are those that use the more traditional and simple acoustic instruments, forgetting the dance-esque backdrop.
However not everyone has been so keen to embrace his change in style. This new shift could have somewhat alienated older fans that have followed Hudson through his Library days and into his solo career.
While his new style has given him a quick ticket to cross over into the mainstream pop charts and secure a wider following, many believe the lyrics have been splashed through a super computer and lack the use of any real instruments, touching on the notion that Hudson is musically better than simply mixing his vocals with a keyboard.
On whatever side of the fence you sit the album is likely to strike gold in the charts, making a convincing case in bringing Hudson to international success. Ultimately though it’s about one man experimenting with a new sound that logs his journey in music so far.
If you have not yet been converted to the quirky, wry and loveable blonde I guarantee your opinion will have changed after just one play through of ‘Straight No Chaser’.
2. White Lies
3. Knew We Were Trouble
4. Straight No Chaser
5. Learning To Live
6. Instant Mesenger
7. There Will Be Tears
8. Stiff Upper Lip
9. Central Park
10. Anyone But Him
11. Everything Is Broken
12. Lift Your Head
14. Supernova (Calvin Harris Remix)
Future Hit; Knew We Were Trouble