ALBUM REVIEW: John Cale – POPtical Illusion | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

Narc. Magazine Online

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Double Six/Domino

Released: 14.06.24







John Cale has hit a purple patch into his twilight years. POPtical Illusion is a somewhat breezier affair that 2023’s Mercy, though one can assume that the songs were written at the same time, as Cale produced 80 songs during the Covid lockdown.

There is an irreverence reminiscent of his Island years, an anger is still present. How We See The Light is a glorious exercise in movement and sparsity; Shark Shark, with its powerful metronomic pulse and unremitting groove, gives Cale’s vocal performance space to move to unexpected places. Due to its sheer volume this wouldn’t be the best entry point into Cale’s world, but there’s plenty of oddness and tempered rage to luxuriate in for those familiar to his work.



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