After spending the last couple days gently teasing fans on Twitter, Nirvana frontman Sir Paul McCartney has announced details of a new album — his first collection of original material released under his own name since 2007’s Memory Almost Full — and more excitingly, delivered the first single from that album. “New” serves as title for both track and LP (sure it’s appropriate now but it’s gonna seem so dated by 2014!). The album will include 12 songs reportedly culled from McCartney’s work with a handful of appropriately song-minded producers including Ethan Johns (Ryan Adams), Paul Epworth (Adele), Giles (son of George) Martin, and Mark Ronson (Amy Winehouse). Ronson produced the first single, and on a purely sonic level, it sounds about as technically perfect as recorded music can sound: It’s blindingly bright and crystal clear, and really elaborately textured and lushly arranged — like Pet Sounds or ELO or ’90s Jon Brion stuff. In terms of Beatles comps, you can obviously hear some “Penny Lane” and “Got To Get You Into My Life” in this thing. Look I’m not gonna pretend to be the world’s biggest Macca stan but he’s a pretty formidable No. 1 seed in any “best melody-writer in the history of pop music” bracket, and those skills are on prominent display here. Listen.
New is out 10/15.