Review: Paul McCartney, ‘Kisses on the Bottom’

Review: Paul McCartney, ‘Kisses on the Bottom’: Aidin Vaziri | After inspiring the kind of frenzy not seen since the height of Beatlemania with his latest round of stadium concerts, Paul McCartney’s return to record stores (Starbucks counters, really) is a letdown. The icky title and amateurish cover art feel a bit Ringo. The music, meanwhile, is pure Rod – timid covers of Great American Songbook standards that strip away all the personality and luster of the great British singer. These are purportedly the tunes the 69-year-old McCartney heard at home while growing up in Liverpool – insufferable ditties like “Me and My Shadow” and “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive.” The sentiment is sweet, but the hotel lounge arrangements here are downright old-fashioned, making the forever-young Macca sound twice his actual age. Maybe it’s because he chose to work with Diana Krall, who is his main accompanist, and producer Tommy LiPuma, who was also responsible for Queen Latifah’s ill-advised foray into standards territory. They are hardly the types to kick things up. But mostly it’s because McCartney’s voice is so lifeless, his phrasing so off that you realize the title is the least disappointing thing about this whole endeavor.

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