New Music of Note
by Nick Parker
It’s no secret that Paul Smith, lead singer of Maximo Park, is a major figure in contemporary British songwriting. For the unacquainted, Maximo Park is an RSL Best of 2009 Selection. It’s so obvious in fact, that a more intriguing question is whether Paul Smith is such a talent in that band that he can produce as great music without the other four. We will all soon be able to judge, as his first solo album, “Margins,” has just been released in Europe. Let’s hope a US release must be on the way too.
the New Album
In the meantime some of this music has already been able to trickle through to us. The video for his first single, “Our Lady of Lourdes,” is already with us, and it certainly suggests it’s worth getting excited about this release.
It seems right that Smith decided to release this song at least under his own name. It’s not Maximo Park. It’s a more passive, subtle sound overall – a little quieter but still as lyrically searing. Another track, “North Atlantic Drift,” released to some US media and fans, also shows this tenderness. Both tracks show that Smith is still someone really worth our attention, with or without the band to drive him.