Patrick Wolf’s third full length album “The Magic Position” is an excellent hybrid of alternative pop, electronic anthems and heart squeezing moments of beauty.
“The Magic Position” like previous albums has a certain hook that crops up throughout. First heard in the joyous “Overture” the violins shriek in joy with the drum rolls and complimented by Patrick’s soaring vocals. This disastrous pop to the minority is a new sound for Wolf and it works so well. The title track follows and that’s where it is most prominent. It’s like taking a cheesy euro-dance track and arranging it for the alternative fans. It’s quite unique until recently where others have jumped on-board but the song itself is genius demented fairytale. “Accident and Emergency” finishes the first trio off in electro pop heaven in similar vein to “Tristan” but less in your face.
“The Bluebell” is a bluesy introduction to “Bluebells” which uses firework sounds to cause an interesting drum circle in what is my joint favourite track on the album. It’s very much like a coming together of Patrick’s acoustic and electronic sides in a perfect mix, singing a dark happy song with downbeat lyrics. It’s such a mish-mash its fantastic. My other favourite track “Magpie” follows, like something Kate Bush should have written, Patrick takes on the voice of a Magpie in a bizarre duet that works so creepily and beautifully at the same time with piano and violin adding effect. Again, genius.
Ambient “X” leads into “Augustine” a lovely relatively straightforward band effort and as its the one one it comes across fresh and it’s catchy melody strays with you for long after. “Secret Garden” may only be a minute and a half with only two lines but it encompasses artistic elements and story telling in a great way and is my favourite and most original short piece on the album.
“Get Lost” returns to the delightful alt-pop deliriously happy side of the album to great effect singing all about the best parts of love. “Enchanted” is a jazz/blues fused smokey bar song and a rare quiet moment on the album but I quickly overlook it for that. Mainly because “Stars” is such a fantastic closer of electric bleeps and a slow build up that pays off with an emotional climax. “Finale” finishes off with a one note extension that’s similar to holding the last chord on a concert while you get a standing ovation…
…And that’s what “The Magic Position” gets. A standing ovation from start to end. It’s deliriously off kilter, mainstream and alternative all at the same time. Patrick deserves every piece of credit as with three albums in he shows no signs of weakness and if his originality holds out I can already see his 4th album to be a roaring success.