You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.


Paul Weller, ‘Sonik Kicks’

In the 35 years since the first Jam record, Paul Weller has, as a bandleader or a solo artist, released 23 studio albums that have made him a megastar in the UK and remained largely invisible in the States outside of mod, punk, and Britpop cult fandom. His latest effort, “Sonik Kicks,’’ won’t change that. Continuing in the same vein as 2010’s “Wake Up the Nation,’’ the album finds Weller throwing sounds against the wall and seeing what sticks. Unfortunately, not much does. Opener “Green’’ is fitted out with a synthesized throb and heavy drumbeat pulse that offer the same spaceflight lift as the Secret Machines, while iPod listeners will be driven to fidget with their headphone connections as the stereo effects toy with their ears. Nothing else is quite so drastic, though Weller dips into dub reggae (“Study in Blue’’), Nick Drake (courtesy of the spacious acoustic guitar and lushly unsettled strings of “By The Waters’’), flattened oompah skank (“Kling I Klang’’) and Bauhaus-like goth glower (“Around the Lake,’’ where the guitar and drums slash equally). But it’s all window dressing, and without memorable tunes, “Sonik Kicks’’ is just sound with little fury. Weller’s songs usually signify more. (Out now) ESSENTIAL “Dragonfly’’

Loading comments...
Want each day's news headlines delivered fresh to your
inbox every morning? Just connect with us
in one of the following ways:
Please enter a valid email will never post anything without asking.
Privacy Policy
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of
Marketing image of