April 29, 2010

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Peter Frampton, Thank You Mr. Churchill
New Door Records, April 27

An icon of Humble Pie origin, Frampton is one of the newest in the seemingly endless line of arena-sellout oldsters who’ve suddenly resurged with Grammy nominations and a weird sort of lighthearted reverence from Generation Text, who jump on any random thing mostly because it’s random. But what all the above tells you is where we are in the great cosmic time capsule, when what we should really discuss is the decentness of this new record, surely destined to extend Frampton’s random reincarnation. He’s not the same guy anymore who decorated the ’70s with acid-druggie talk-box sounds and nebulously jazzy riffing; this boils down to trolling the middle ground between latter-day fuddy-duddy Clapton and Queens of the Stone Age (the Clapton’s more prevalent). Some good stuff results, like the explosive guitar break that saves “I’m Due A You” from dying a nondescript oldschool beer-commercial death; “Solution” is an odd but easily digestible combination of Melvins, Bob Seeger and ’80s guitar-god-rock; “Road to the Sun” unexpectedly flirts with Creed on the vocal end. BEric W. Saeger