MARK KNOPFLER Kill To Get Crimson
From page 68 of Classic Rock Magazine October 2007
Hanging up the headband and exploring the heartland. Mark Knopfler's 2006 collaboration with Emmylou Harris, All The Roadrunning, was his most successful album since the stadiumfilling days of Dire Straits almost 20 years earlier, and this new set of slowburning folk and country stays close to that template, typical of the quiet and unassuming releases that have marked out his solo work.
It's a winning blend of traditional instrumentation (acoustic guitars, sparingly punctuated by fiddles, flutes and accordions) and more modern-themed wry lyrical concerns, kitchen sink scenarios not far removed from, say, Chris Difford or even Richard Hawley.
The Scaffolder's Wife is a gentle examination of a woman yearning fore better life but trapped in mindnumbing suburbia, while Punish The Monkey is a curious account of humble employees shafted by criminally-minded fat cat bosses, set to the laconic soft rock rhythms of early Straits records like Communique.
Knopfler's is an oddly English little world, although the opening True Love Will Never Fade owes much to the subdued Driftersesque pop of late 80s Springsteen. ••••••
Terry Stuns ton