Paul McCartney - McCartney II
- Stewart Smith
- 13 June 2011
1980 album a work of bonged-out pop genius
A relative flop in 1980, McCartney II is a work of bonged-out pop genius. The ‘hits’ – the dork disco gem ‘Coming Up’ and the beautiful ‘Waterfalls’ – although wonderful, only hint at the oddness within. ‘Temporary Secretary’ still confounds with its percolating electro synth line and out-of-tune acoustic guitars. Then there’s the not-quite reggae of ‘Darkroom’; its pitched-up snares sounding uncannily like drum ’n bass, and the graceful Vaughan Williams via Eno pastoralism of ‘Summer’s Day Song’. Even more adventurous are the b-sides and unreleased tracks included here. ‘Check My Machine’ reimagines the Grange Hill theme as loping banjo funk, while ‘Secret Friend’ is ten minutes of cosmic bliss, all disembodied vocals, wonky synths and bossa beats. Thumbs aloft.