The Waterboys: Modern Blues | Album Review

Mon, Jan 19, 2015, 11:26


Modern Blues

The Waterboys

Harlequin & Clown/Kobalt


Ever the romantic, poetic bohemian, top cat Waterboy Mike Scott takes flight here on a song called I Can see Elvis, wherein he envisions Mr Presley shaking a leg with The Who’s Keith Moon, William Shakespeare and Joan of Arc up in heaven. It’s typical Waterboys (in a good way), but other tunes are less fanciful: November Tale is a wistful story about the ordinariness of sharing a cigarette with someone, while Beautiful Now is probably the closest to very fine powerpop The Waterboys will ever get. Matters get slightly messy with the longer songs, notably the closing track, Long Strange Golden Road, which is 10 minutes-plus of half an idea stretched to breaking point. But that’s Scott for you: he’s something of a maverick genius who, occasionally, overreaches himself. Frankly, it’s why we dig him so much.