Track listing (key track in bold)
1. Scream (Funk My Life Up)
2. Let Me Down Easy
3. Bus Talk
4. One Day
7. Better Man
8. Iron Sky
10. Fashion (feat. Janelle Monae)
11. Looking for Something
12. Cherry Blossom
13. Someone Like You
Paolo Nutini has his fair share of critics, as most artists with his level of mainstream success do. I mean, he makes radio friendly music, is a bit of a pretty boy and his albums hit number one. He hasn’t been helped by X Factor wannabes belting out his hit “Last Request” every other week. This means that his critical appeal is in contrast to his commercial appeal. Which is slightly harsh as he has released a pretty decent, soulful album here.
Most people would point to Nutini as being some how inauthentic with his stage presence (hunched up old man, despite only being 27) and the music he makes. But, when you listen to Caustic Love, it is very clear that this could actually be an album made by Joe Cocker in the seventies. It is all horns and backing singers and pretty funky in places. James Blunt it is not!
The music itself is led by first single Scream (Funk up my Life) which is a nice slice of soul. “Numpty” is very reminiscent of Mad Dogs-era Joe Cocker. Elsewhere, there is “Fashion” featuring Janelle Monae and the albums key track, the lovely “Iron Sky”. It’s not all soul and funk though, you can also hear some blues, some psych rock and some fifties rock and roll. In that regard he could even be likened to a musical chameleon such as Harry Nilsson maybe?
All in all, this could possibly be Nutini’s most accomplished album to date. I doubt it will do anything to change his detractors minds, but I dare say he doesn’t mind one bit.