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Lloyd Cole, though he’d never be so gauche as to suggest it himself, has enjoyed something of a renaissance in 2013. He released his new ‘career best’ album ‘Standards’ in the summer and also found himself with star billing on the UK’s finest music TV show ‘Later With Jools Holland’. He has been playing to sell-out houses across Europe ever since.
Recorded in late 2012 to early 2013 in Los Angeles, New York and at his home in Easthampton, Massachusetts, ‘Standards’ is produced by Lloyd and mixed by maverick German producer Olaf Opal. All songs are by Lloyd Cole apart from ‘California Earthquake’, which was written by American folk artist John Hartford.
Inspired in part by the vitality he found in septuagenarian Dylan’s acclaimed 2012 album ‘Tempest’ - says Cole: “I took it as a kick up the backside…” – ‘Standards’ is a gloriously electric rock’n’roll record and arguably the best thing he has made since his groundbreaking debut with the Commotions, 1984’s ‘Rattlesnakes’.
'Burst on to the scene' is a horribly overused phrase but it's exactly what Lloyd Cole and the Commotions did in 1984 with 'Perfect Skin', 'Forest Fire' and their era-defining album 'Rattlesnakes'. They went from Glasgow clubs to stadiums in 18 months. Hits 'Lost Weekend' and 'Brand New Friend' propelled LP2 'Easy Pieces' to the upper reaches of the album charts all over the world. One last album 'Mainstream' and one last hit 'Jennifer She Said', and by 1989 they were gone. In 1990 Lloyd Cole launched a solo career and has been making albums ever since. In the early 2000s Cole retreated somewhat from rock/pop, performing mostly acoustically, but his 2013 album 'Standards' took fans, critics, and maybe even the artist himself, aback with its brash electric rock'n'roll sound. It was universally acclaimed, Cole was back on TV, and there was an undeniable demand for some electric band shows. But there was no band. Cole contacted old Glasgow pals The Leopards (Mick Slaven and Campbell Owens) and asked if they might like to play some shows... supplemented by ex Commotion Blair Cowan on keyboards, Lloyd Cole and the Leopards was born.
See Lloyd Cole tour dates
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