Saturday, October 27, 2007

Review: Mark Ronson - Electric Proms

The BBC has been running this Electric Proms thingy all week but I haven't really seen much of it. Same as last year, when it began, when I only made a point of watching Jamiroquai. (Ah, wherefore art thou....?)

Anyway, Mark Ronson made an album this year called "Version" which basically did what it said on the tin - an album of rather inventive cover versions. This concert featured the producer/guitarist backed by the BBC Concert Orchestra and was screened the other night on BBC2, which is what I'm reviewing.

"Oh My God": guest vocalist Ricky Wilson. Oh the irony - the original singer instead of Lily Allen. Unfortunately he thought he was still at a Kaiser Chiefs gig. Oooohhhhhhhhh.....
"Sunny": guest vocalist Candie Payne. There's something delightfully old-fashioned about her. Old is the new new.
"Back To Black": guest vocalist Charlie Waller. Sadly I didn't share Mr Ronson's enthusiasm for this guy's interpretation of Ms Winehouse's dark dramatic number.
"Sail On Sailor": guest vocalist Sean Lennon. I didn't recognise him under all that hair and beard. Ronson only heard this a year ago but loves it. I love it too, but Lennon's version couldn't top the Beach Boys.
"The Only One I Know": guest vocalist Tim Burgess. The floppy-fringed one has aged well and still looks great. This put a lot more funkiness and soul into the original.
"Valerie": guest vocalist Kyle Falconer. Revelation of the night. This was good. This boy can actually sing. You can't keep a good song down, and this energetic version proved that once more.
"Stop Me": guest vocalist Daniel Merriweather. A blasting orchestral finale and the song that brought Mark Ronson to everyone's attention - but it's Merriweather who is the real star here, great voice, lots of soul. I will stick my neck out here and say that 2008 will be his year. Mark my words.
All in all an enjoyable experience and even if it's just glorified karaoke, Mark Ronson has provided a real bright spot in what, UK-wise, has been an unremarkable musical year.

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