The Streets - Computers And Blues
When to stop? It’s a question all artists must ask themselves, and it’s telling that Mike Skinner seems to already have decided that Computers And Blues will be his last album as The Streets. While Original Pirate Material and A Grand Don’t Come For Free remain, in this reviewer’s opinion, stone cold classics, this fails to improve on the disappointment of albums three and four. At least those two records had some standout tracks; Computers and Blues doesn’t. Everything Is Borrowed bravely dropped the drug references for sometimes touching musings on love and spirituality. Skinner here returns to the old themes, but any sense of freshness is lacking. The words are occasionally interesting though. On 'Roof Of Your Car' he ponders the morality of getting "fucked" were it achieved via electrical implants in your brain and caused no health problems; 'OMG' considers Facebook’s role (status updates and all) in modern relationships. Musically however, Computers and Blues is a tortoise, especially with the likes of Burial and James Blake now at the forefront of bedroom production. Where those first two albums were bursting with the energy of a story that must be told, this just sounds tame and tired. Still, Mike’s given us some great times. Would it be in bad taste to declare one’s hope that he has a plan B?