Frank Turner – Tape Deck Heart


Artist

Album

Tape Deck Heart

Label

Xtra Mile/ Interscope

Year

2013

Genre

For Fans Of

The Gaslight Anthem - Dave Hause -

Summary

Tuner at his darkest, most personal, and as a result, at his best.

Rating

98 / 100

Frank Turner’s best and most recent offering, ‘Tape Deck Heart’ is a record that cements his immense, overflowing talent and overwhelms the listener with its organic sincerity, masterful song writing and emotional conviction. ‘Tape Deck Heart’ will steal your heart, at times leave you emotionally drained and will surely win a place on the shelf with those records you treasure most. Practically flawless in its execution and affecting until the very end, Tape Deck Heart is, put most simply, exceptional.

Released as the first single of the album, kick-off track, ‘Recovery’ possesses a begrudging optimism and bounce that on its own satisfies high hopes and sets the bar high for the rest of the record. Turner’s lyricism is as impressive and as honest as ever, and with lyrics like "If anybody ever asks us let’s just tell them that we met in jail" injects equal shots of lark, romanticism and defiance into his songs. ‘Losing Days’ and ‘The Way I Tend To Be’ adopt mildly darker tones riddled with nostalgia and raw sentiment and ‘Plain Sailing Weather,’ and ‘Tell Take Signs’ turns ‘Tape Deck Heart’ bleaker still, evoking sounds of heartache in Turner’s sometimes imperfect but always effective sweetened punk vocals.

With lyrics like "It’s not even love anymore, it’s just a claim upon my soul,"Tell Tale Signs’ reveals something very personal from Turner, and this being said, ‘Tape Deck Heart’ is at its core, a deeply intimate record. While not particularly technical musically, its stylistic modesty allows for Turner’s classic song writing ability and obvious devotion to shine through. Nowhere is this passion more evident than in ‘Four Simple Words’, one of the most enjoyable and aggressive tracks on the album that changes up the pace briefly and highlights Turner’s hardcore and punk learning. ‘Anymore’ and ‘Broken Piano’ represent Tape Deck Heart at its most simplistic and stripped back, with minimal instrumental accompaniment lending a bittersweet melancholy to the conclusion of the album.

Tape Deck Heart’s bonus tracks could easily have made up an accompanying EP to follow the album, and as a result, being tacked on to the deluxe edition may mean they are overshadowed or forgotten. Regardless, Turner proves he has an ability that won’t quit with tracks such as ‘Tattoos’ and acoustic gem ‘Cowboy Chords’ – immediate favorites that easily could have made it onto the record.

Conclusion

Tape Deck Heart is everything a release should be for an artist this far into his career, and is an exceptional reminder of all that Frank Turner is capable of. While Tape Deck Heart may be difficult to top, Turner has won the returned dedication of his listeners.

Tracklisting

1. Recovery
2. Losing Days
3. The Way I Tend To Be
4. Plain Sailing Weather
5. Good and Gone
6. Tell Tale Signs
7. Four Simple Words
8. Polaroid Picture
9. The Fisher King Blues
10. Anymore
11. Oh Brother
12. Broken Piano

Deluxe Extras
We Shall Not Overcome
Wherefore Art Thou Gene Simmons
Tattoos
Underdeveloped Film
Time Machine
Cowboy Chords

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