Ian Brown Solarized

Yes, Ian Brown is still at it. And no, he isn’t reforming the Stone Roses, ever. Instead, he continues to work as a solo artist, fusing the musical styles that interest him the most. He’s found moderate success in his home country, but really, his solo work is nothing that will make him much more than the former vocalist of a truly great, innovative band. Brown still explores all sorts of different sounds in his attempts though, and it’s hard to deny he has a knack for such a thing. His programmed beats push forward his blend of electronica and psychedelic rock, while splurging on the multi-cultural influences he seems so impressed by. Solarized is easily his least accessible album, but its also his most adventurous. He uses a mariachi band (or a sample of one) to lead "Time Is My Everything,” and an Asian melody to assist with "One Way Ticket To Paradise.” Brown even revisits the type of beat heavy soundscape he used in his UNKLE collaboration in "Home Is Where the Heart Is,” but with a much weaker impact. It seems as though the only interest in the man is when he "resurrects” his old Stone Roses songs at his concerts, which is a shame because he has the talent. The problem is he’s only making music for Ian Brown, and that obviously isn’t what anyone else wants to hear. (Polydor)