Friday, July 5, 2013
Paul Westerberg "Mono" (2002)
Unfortunately, that cover photo is probably the rowdiest thing on this album. Now many years removed from his heyday in The Replacements, this is a solid if not fiery release. Westerberg is struggling to followup the high points of his earlier career. When your reputation is built on sloppy energetic rock music, how does a middle aged man continue in that vein? The musicians who have seemed to stay relevant tend to be more musically exploratory. The audience is unable to compare the newer with the older material simply because they are too different.
Unfortunately, Westerberg tries to stay with the tried & true. Without the energy or the sloppiness of his earlier work, Mono seems to be a footnote at best. While it's not bad, there's just no reason to listen to it when you already have the older material.