Lloyd Cole has long been reinventing himself - tiny piece
by tiny piece. In the new millennium alone, he has gone from self-deprecating
reformed rock star, to frontman of the fine rock band The Negatives,
and now back to introspective, soul-searching folk singer. The
music on this new record is downbeat and reflective, a perfect
match for the lyrical subjects. Cole's songs continue to be laced
with colorful references to Los Angeles and drugs, making one
feel like listening to his songs is akin to peering into his very
soul. The music is minimalist in instrumentation, relying mostly
on acoustic guitar offset with the occasional piano, steel guitar,
or bass guitar. There is a complete lack of percussion, lending
to the intimate living room quality of the album.
The songs on Music In A Foreign Language range from a delicately
reworked version of Cole's own "No More Love songs"
to a cover of Nick Cave's "People Ain't No Good".
The title track sets the mood for the entire album's emotional
rollercoaster, "I am cold, distant, increasingly resistant
to your smile/ This I don't deny/ you are bold, beautiful, I'm
always gonna be in love with you/ Amphetamines or not/ You say,
give it to me straight/ I already did, there isn't anymore/ What
pale fire I ever had is gone/ but you don't want to hear that
in a song".
There is no disputing the sorrow that haunts Lloyd Cole, and ekes
out through his songs, hidden less and less as the years go by.
With each album that he has recorded, Cole has allowed the public
an ever-widening glimpse into the wonderfully complex landscape
of his soul, sharing his experiences and loves and disappointments
and addictions. This newest record is no exception, and once again
proves what a complete master of song Lloyd Cole really has become.
1. Music In A Foreign Language
2. My Other Life
3. Late Night, Early Town
4. Cutting Out
5. No More Love Songs
6. Today I'm Not So Sure
7. My Alibi
8. People Ain't No Good
10. Shelf Life
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