But I don't know if I understand this man either, though I'm still fond of him. If the first solo album was brett's declaration of his weariness of the music industry, the second one was surely a further step away from the usual game, yes, a step into the wilderness. Just a cello, a piano, guitars and human voices, sheer minimalism and DIY, simple but beautiful. Brett still drowned in his own little bleak world, sometimes blessed in the motherly tenderness, but mostly feeling hurt, by the shattered relationship, lovers of malicious exchange (Clowns), lingered as stale stagnation (Chinese Whispers) and eventually turned to long-lost perfect strangers (Knife Edge), for brett there was no future in love. It's personal but not necessarily trivial. People cringed at the lyrics like "war machines rust eternally" or "clowns tumbling into town", which I think they were beautiful imagery. It's the same old self-indulgent brett anderson, using his sci-fi words for his loveless love songs. My favourite song of the album remains to be "Back to You", the solo version was issued in the ep last year (remember that sad cartoon mv?) and i have the pleasure to hear it performed in the hong kong gig last year. Here the song was duet with Emmanuelle Seigner, a calm and estranged vocal, perfectly matched with the grey sky of brett.
The aged diva finally stepped down the stage and wiped away the last trace of her make-up. oh, the diva is in fact a man, witthered and wrinkled. Farewell to the psycho for sex and glue, now brett is a lonely man alone in his back garden, blessed in the void of London's wilderness, edifies to a different place, or wanders to Serpentine, musing on eternity expressed with every word, every breath. yes, may i call brett a dharma bum?
(i really love all those lonely photos of this album)