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'True Meanings' - New Paul Weller Album Due in September

Paul Weller's new album 'True Meanings' cover art. Image courtesy of Parlophone / Paul Weller

A new Paul Weller album has been officially announced. Called True Meanings the modfather’s 14th solo album will be released this September, and it looks like the seasoned musician will be venturing into new musical territory.

The official blurb is calling the record unlike any he has made before, with “grandiose-yet-delicate, lush orchestration” and a “dreamy, peaceful, pastoral set of songs to get lost in”. It follows on from last year’s A Kind Revolution, which saw the former Jam and Style Council member experimenting with new styles.

Paul Weller at the Rainbow Theatre, London in 1979. © Jill Furmanovsky

Styles that differ somewhat to the music the musician made his name with, music that came to define the Mod revival/punk rock scene back in the late 70s and early 80s. Where Weller and his bandmates wore sharp suits and nodded sartorially and musically to the 60s groups like The Kinks and The Who, taking in aspects of R&B and Mod rock.

Paul Weller, with The Jam, backstage at Wembey Arena, wearing a Rubber Soul belt, before performing in December 1982. © Virginia Turbett

But it was music that also came with a political bite, taking aim at Thatcherism and 80s Britain. And, in 1985, saw Weller join the Bill Bragg-fronted Red Wedge collective, which saw Weller, Bragg and other musicians go on tour and play concerts in support of the Labour party. They split up when, in 1987, the Tories won a third consecutive victory.

Still, although he might not be writing political songs any more, Weller has said recently he still dislikes the Tories, “I do have a particular hatred for the Tory Party, that's for sure.” he said. “I hate their smugness and the way they just look after their own. I think that's quite disgusting and shocking in this day and age.”

Paul Weller, of the Style Council, on the set of 'Jerusalem'. © Clare Muller

The new album will feature 14 tracks, one of which is “Aspects” which was released earlier this year in May, on Paul Weller’s birthday. Speaking about that single back on its release, Weller said, “I don’t know if it’s indicative of the album, but it’s certainly the cornerstone to the record for me. It’s also where I got the title of the album from.”

The album sees Weller collaborating with folk legends Martin Carthy and Danny Thompson, along with contributions from Conor O'Brien, Lucy Rose and Noel Gallagher. Weller and Gallagher have previously worked together on “Echoes Round the Sun” a song on Weller's 2008 LP 22 Dreams and “Birth of an Accidental Hipster”, which they both wrote for The Monkees' 2016 album Good Times! And Weller played the organ on Gallagher’s track “Holy Mountain“ from his Who Built the Moon? record.

Paul Weller performing on stage in Aylesbury in 1978. © Sheila Rock

True Meanings was recorded in just over 3 weeks in Weller’s Black Barn recording studio in Surrey. When asked whether it was a folk album, Weller noted to RTÉ Entertainment,It's got an acoustic guitar on it but if that makes it a folk album, I really don't know. It's just about songs, voice and guitar essentially, and there are some tracks that have been orchestrated, strings and brass. But yeah, there has been a folk thing in my music. Especially the early Nineties stuff. I've done songs on albums previously that are like this new record but I've never done a whole record like this. I wouldn't like to say it's folk. I've no idea what it is.”

True Meanings will be released on 14th September on Parlophone records. You can pre-order it here. Listen to “Aspects” below.

Rockarchive is delighted to be able to offer many iconic Paul Weller and The Jam images as limited edition photographic prints which you can buy here and here.

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