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No-Man - Loveblows & Lovecries - A Confession CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.99 | 61 ratings

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3 stars No-man is the brainchild of Steve Wilson and Tim Bowness. It used to be Wilson's main band before Porcupine Tree, the side-project that he started off as a joke, rose to international stardom. Listening to No-man's debut, things could easily have turned in favour of No-man as it is a delightful quality pop album.

The music on No-man's debut is heavily rooted in the 80's pop music, lending elements from dance music and arty pop such as Talk Talk and Japan of course, whose members participate on one track. David Sylvian is not in the list of featured guests but Bowness makes up for that with a whispery croon that has plenty of Sylvian mannerisms. In a way No-man bridges 80's synth pop with the imminent trip-hop breakthrough of bands like Tricky and Massive Attack. In fact, it's one of the reasons why it could have made perfect sense that No-man had broken through and not Porcupine Tree.

The album has a number of very clever pop-tunes such as Only Baby, Housekeeping, Taking it Like A Man and the Japan-assisted Sweetheart Raw. The funky Painting Paradise is a certain highpoint, both by its smart arrangements and emotive power. But there is also a lot of material that is too fluffy for me such as Lovecry and Beautiful and Cruel. Also Tulip doesn't do much for me, despite the charming sampling of Yes's Roundabout opening chord.

Overal an interesting debut of a band that did not appeal to many people. At least not before Porcupine Tree rose to fame and No-man drastically changed their style to become an outlet for Wilson's ambient pop interests at the end of the 90's.

Bonnek | 3/5 |


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