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Richard Ashcroft – These People (2016) [Official Digital Download 24bit/44,1kHz]

Richard Ashcroft – These People (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 51:08 minutes | 639 MB | Genre: Pop
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download  | Front Cover | © Righteous Phonographic Association

Six years after forming the United Nations of Sound — a pseudo-group that lasted no more than a single record — Richard Ashcroft pushes himself back into the spotlight on These People, a 2016 album that finds the former Verve singer reuniting with Wil Malone, an orchestrator who worked on Urban Hymns and Northern Soul. Malone’s presence suggests These People may achieve a certain symphonic heft, yet Ashcroft sidesteps the churning psychedelia and progressive majesty of the Verve’s prime. In its place, the singer/songwriter taps into a certain insouciant sophistication, favoring insistent arena anthems and finely tailored Eurodisco. Often, Ashcroft’s intentions are apparent — it’s evident whenever he’s following the blueprints of “Bittersweet Symphony” and “The Drugs Don’t Work,” just as it’s clear that the dance beats and electronics are a bid for hip credibility — but he winds up with sounds that aren’t the ideal vehicle for whatever vague sociological protest Ashcroft attempts to mine here. If the music is separated from the message — which is fairly easy to do, due to its slippery shimmer — These People functions as a pleasing adult alternative record. True, it’s an album that favors mood over form but after several somnolent solo records, not to mention the botched ambitions of the United Nations of Sound, the cool assurance and shiny veneer of These People is quite welcome. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

01. Out of My Body
02. This Is How It Feels
03. They Don’t Own Me
04. Hold On
05. These People
06. Everybody Needs Somebody to Hurt
07. Picture of You
08. Black Lines
09. Ain’t the Future so Bright
10. Songs of Experience


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