Aimee Mann

The Forgotten Arm - Super Ego Records 2005

Tracks: 1. Dear John / 2. King of the Jailhouse / 3. Goodbye Caroline / 4. Going Through the Motions / 5. I Can't Get My Head Around I / 6. She Really Wants You / 7. Video / 8. Little Bombs / 9. "That's How I Knew This Story Would Break My Heart / 10.I Can't Help You Anymore / 11. I Was Thinking I Could Clean Up for Christmas / 12. Beautiful / 13. Who Knows*

Comments:

Aimee Mann's 2005 album "The Forgotten Arm" is a concept album; or what previously would be called a rock opera. Through twelve mostly excellent wellwritten songs Mann describes a complicated relationship between a boxer, John, and his girlfriend Caroline. The CD is nicely released with a small booklet with both lyrics and fine illustrations.

Musically Mann is in the classic rock style with both solid electric guitars, keyboards, melodic songs and whatever else belongs to the genre. At first, one might feel a lack immediately catchy songs that characterize other Mann albums; perhaps with "Going Through the Motions" as a memorable exception. Giving the album a second chance, though, you'll discover that besides the moving story that is told, you will also get a collection of very fine songs that easily measures with her other albums.

The songs are separately all strong enough to stand alone outside the concept of the album and in addition to the fine singles "Video" and in particular "Going Through the Motions" I will highlight the ballad "That When I Knew This Story Would Break My Heart" and "Little Bombs" - and note too, that no songs feels unnecessary or unimportant.

This really should be the basis for a great musical setting or a movie dramatization Mann and the songs deserve it.


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