Music of the Spheres

Music of the Spheres

by Ian BrownIan Brown


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Before Music of the Spheres was released, Ian Brown touted it as a return for him to the peak form of his former band, the Stone Roses. As things go in the U.K., many members of the British music press jumped on the comments and appropriated Brown's views as their own. Realistically, Music of the Spheres is a strong, mature album, befitted with lush, exhilarating production that easily fits alongside Unfinished Monkey Business and Golden Greats, but it doesn't introduce anything revolutionary or match the excellence of The Stone Roses. The only thing that seems new for Brown on Music of the Spheres is that a number of the songs sound like minimalist tone poem explorations and that he sings in Spanish on "El Mundo Pequeno." One example of the minimalism is "Hear No See No," where Brown accompanies spare electronic notes with whispers of the title lyrics. But the album is at its strongest when he reaches for the inspired hooks and choruses that are his bread and butter. "F.E.A.R." is particularly compelling, with its lush string sounds and Brown's insanely catchy repetition of the letters that make up the song's title. "Stardust" and "Shadow of a Saint" are the album's other standouts, where Brown concocts frazzled poetry like, "I'm made from stardust/The same DNA as stardust," and intones about the "wings of an angel." Less bombastic than Golden Greats and more focused than Unfinished Monkey Business, Music of the Spheres is brimming with charm and accomplished, polished songcraft. There's no reason for Brown to abandon this style of music, and there's also no reason that he should feel the need to match the glories of The Stone Roses. Ian Brown's solo discography includes nothing but vibrant, organic albums. Each is worth exploring nearly as much as those of his former band. Considering the undeniably genius of the Stone Roses, that's extremely high praise.

Product Details

Release Date: 12/23/2002
Label: Imports
UPC: 0731458912620
catalogNumber: 946686
Rank: 65503

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ian Brown   Primary Artist,Vocals
Mark Berrow   Strings
Roger Chase   Strings
Francis Dunnery   Bass,Guitar,Background Vocals
Martin Loveday   Vacuum Cleaner
Rita Manning   Strings
Maciej Rakowski   Strings
Dermot Crehan   Strings
Mary Scully   Strings
Bill Hawkes   Strings
Peter Lale   Strings
Tony Pleeth   Strings
Philippa Ibbotson   Strings
Patrick Kiernan   Strings
Boguslaw Kostecki   Strings
Frank Schaefer   Strings
Jackie Shave   Strings
Bruce White   Strings
David Daniels [cello]   Strings
Philip Dukes   Strings
Dave McCracken   Bass,Guitar,Keyboards
Mark Sayfritz   Keyboards
Matt Pegg   Bass
Everton Nelson   Strings
Miffy Hirsch   Strings
Emlyn Singleton   Strings
Paddy Lannigan   Strings
Inda Goldfinger   Percussion
Helen Hathorn   Strings
Tim Wills   Guitar
Dan Liebermann   Background Vocals
Perry Montague-Mason   Strings
Katie Wilkinson Khoroshunin   Strings
David Woodcock   Strings

Technical Credits

Cathy Thompson   String Arrangements
Dave McCracken   Programming,Producer
Mark Sayfritz   Programming
Damon Iddins   Engineer
Tim Wills   Engineer
Michael White   Photo Assistance
Steve Price   Engineer

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