Once upon a time, Graham Parker was a British pub rocker and the quintessential angry young man. While he may not have mellowed so much even though he has lived in upstate New York for years, Parker now inhabits the rootsy category and three decades into his career, Parker sounds exceedingly solid in a disc of excellent material.
The lyrics aren't always so easy to understand especially given Parker's British upbringing. But Parker certainly aims for songs that matter. The bouncy "England's Latest Clown" is about troubled musician Pete Doherty. Parker gets political on many songs, including the environmentally-based "The Other Side of the Reservoir" and "Stick to the Plan," where he covers a tremendous amount of political ground in a bouncy retro '50s feel complete with horns and backing female vocalists making. "Total Eclipse of the Moon," about a relationship gone sour, is another highlight.
Parker may not have changed all that much over the years or shied away from what he thinks, and with the meat and depth displayed here, that's a mighty good thing.