.
http://assets-s3.rollingstone.com/assets/images/album_review/b14a15c98bfc530bcd09b9e99cac8c1485f1a73f.jpg Keep It Simple

Van Morrison

Keep It Simple

Lost Highway Records
Rolling Stone: star rating
Community: star rating
5 3.5 0
April 3, 2008

At this point in his career, Van Morrison is less interested in surprises than in further exploring his long-standing obsessions: surviving the shocks of this life and rising gracefully toward the next one. Keep It Simple finds him looking back on his sixty-two years, filled with longing — for home, for deliverance from the world's demands, for spiritual transcendence. He boasts of surviving the "School of HardKnocks," wryly chronicles a newfound sobriety in the aging roust about's lament "Don't Go to Nightclubs Anymore" and sails into the mystic on the album closer, "Behind the Ritual." Typically, the band settles into a comfortable groove while Morrison lifts off into the trancelike realm he calls "entrainment." Meanwhile, the arrangements are elegantly spare: subtle works of guitar, bass, keyboards, percussion, occasional backup singers and, at the center of it all, Morrison's incomparable voice, as expressive as ever. "Only a fool could think that things would ever be simple again," he sings on the title track. But on this simple, soulful record, that kind of foolishness feels like wisdom.

prev
Album Review Main Next

ADD A COMMENT

Community Guidelines »
loading comments

loading comments...

COMMENTS

Sort by:
    Read More
    Around the Web
    Powered By ZergNet
    Daily Newsletter

    Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

    Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
    marketing partners.

    X

    We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

    Song Stories

    “Nightshift”

    The Commodores | 1984

    The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

    More Song Stories entries »
    www.expandtheroom.com