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Rock - Paru le 18 juin 2021 | Purple Pyramid Records

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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 1984 | EMI

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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 2003 | A&M

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 2001 | A&M

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Rock - Paru le 15 janvier 2001 | A&M

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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 1982 | EMI

1982 will forever be known as the year that the punks got class -- or at least when Joe Jackson and Elvis Costello, rivals for the title of Britain's reigning Angry Young Man -- decided that they were not just rockers, but really songwriters in the Tin Pan Alley tradition. (Graham Parker, fellow angry Brit, sat this battle out, choosing to work with Aerosmith producer Jack Douglas instead.) Both had been genre-hopping prior to 1982, but Jackson's Night and Day and Costello's Imperial Bedroom announced to the world that both were "serious songwriters," standing far apart from the clamoring punkers and silly new wavers. In retrospect, the ambitions of these two 27-year-olds (both born in August 1954, just two weeks apart) seem a little grandiose, and if Imperial Bedroom didn't live up to its masterpiece marketing campaign (stalling at number 30 on the charts without generating a hit), it has garnered a stronger reputation than Night and Day, which was a much more popular album, climbing all the way to number four on the U.S. charts, thanks to the Top Ten single "Steppin' Out." Night and Day had greater success because it's sleek and bright, entirely more accessible than the dense, occasionally unwieldy darkness of Imperial Bedroom. Plus, Jackson plays up the comparisons to classic pop songwriting by lifting his album title from Cole Porter, dividing the record into a "night" and "day" side, and then topping it off with a neat line drawing of him at his piano in a New York apartment on the cover. All of these classy trappings are apparent on the surface, which is the problem with the record: it's all stylized, with the feel eclipsing the writing, which is kind of ironic considering that Jackson so clearly strives to be a sophisticated cosmopolitan songwriter here. He gets the cosmopolitan, big-city feel down pat; although the record never delivers on the "night" and "day" split, with the latter side feeling every bit as nocturnal as the former, his blend of percolating Latin rhythms, jazzy horns and pianos, stylish synths, and splashy pop melodies uncannily feel like a bustling, glitzy evening in the big city. On that front, Night and Day is a success, since it creates a mood and sustains it very well. Where it lets down is the substance of the songs. At a mere nine tracks, it's a brief album even by 1982 standards, and it seems even shorter because about half the numbers are more about sound than song. "A Slow Song" gets by on its form, not what it says, while "Target" and "Cancer" are swinging Latin-flavored jams that disappear into the air. "Chinatown" is a novelty pastiche that's slightly off-key, but nowhere near as irritating as "T.V. Age," where Jackson mimics David Byrne's hyper-manic vocal mannerisms. These all fit the concept of the LP and they're engaging on record, but they're slight, especially given Jackson's overarching ambition -- and their flimsiness is brought into sharp relief by the remaining four songs, which are among Jackson's very best. There is, of course, the breakthrough hit "Steppin' Out," which pulsates anticipatory excitement, but the aching "Breaking Us in Two" is just as good, as is the haunting "Real Men" and the album opener, "Another World," a vibrant, multi-colored song that perfectly sets up the sonic and lyrical themes of the album. If all of Night and Day played at this level, it would be the self-styled masterpiece Joe Jackson intended it to be. Instead, it is a very good record that delivers some nice, stylish pleasures; but its shortcomings reveal precisely how difficult it is to follow in the tradition of Porter and Gershwin. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop/Rock - Paru le 18 janvier 2019 | earMUSIC

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En 1979, Joe Jackson déboule sur la scène rock avec un premier album explosif, Look Sharp!. Quarante ans plus tard, le trublion britannique à la carrière dense et on ne peut plus éclectique prouve que son inspiration n’est pas en berne. Avec Fool, co-produit avec Pat Dillett (David Byrne, Sufjan Stevens, Glen Hansard), Joe Jackson met justement à l’honneur sa diversité stylistique avec des chansons à 360°. Punk rock, new wave, power pop, ballade mélancolique, blues classieux, rythmes latinos, rien ne manque à l’appel de ce 20e album studio qui souligne l’imagination fertile d’un créateur de 64 ans déconnecté des modes éphémères car totalement maître de son propre style. © Clotilde Maréchal/Qobuz
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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 1986 | A&M

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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 1979 | EMI

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Pop - Paru le 2 octobre 2015 | earMUSIC

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Joe Jackson is a gifted pop songwriter who clearly believes that isn't enough for him. Jackson has been pushing at his own boundaries for decades, embracing jump blues, cool jazz, and swing in the '80s, abandoning pop for classical and symphonic music for a few years in the '90s, and reworking a set of Duke Ellington pieces on 2012's The Duke. Jackson's ambition is as great as his talent, but his talent has always been best served writing intelligent pop tunes, and his most earnest efforts outside the form have also demonstrated just where his skills wear thin. 2015's Fast Forward suggests Jackson is trying to reach a middle ground with this material, delivering a set of intelligent, sophisticated pop numbers that also leave room for him to experiment with a range of stylistic approaches. Jackson blocked out an unusual strategy for making the album; Fast Forward was recorded in four parts, with Jackson cutting four songs each in four different cities, with a different set of musicians accompanying him for each of the four sessions. Jackson's refined melodic sense and straightforward but splendidly executed keyboard work dominate the performances regardless of his surroundings, and while he has some impressive talent joining him here -- Bill Frisell and Brian Blade in New York, Stefan Kruger and Stefan Schmid of Zuco 103 in Amsterdam, Greg Cohen and Earl Harvin in Berlin, and several members of Galactic in New Orleans -- above all, this sounds like Joe Jackson, complete with his arch wit, polished songcraft, and intelligence that only occasionally dips into stuffiness. (It's worth noting that the tracks with Galactic boast a bigger and stronger swing than the rest of the album, and Frisell contributes a superb guitar solo on an unlikely cover of Television's "See No Evil"). Predictably, it's Jackson's smarts that get him in trouble here, in particular on an overwrought version of the German cabaret tune "Good Bye Jonny" and "Far Away," an attempt to evoke the thoughts of a troubled child that sounds like a song from some unfinished Broadway musical. And "Junkie Diva" is a needlessly pitiless attack on Amy Winehouse; one would think being dead at 27 would be punishment enough. But the sizable majority of Fast Forward finds Joe Jackson in excellent form, singing as well as he did in his salad days and leading his various combos with intelligence and cool enthusiasm. If this isn't quite up to the standards of his '80s high-water marks like Night and Day and Big World, it comes close enough that longtime fans will find plenty to enjoy, and some bits that will challenge them. © Mark Deming /TiVo
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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1999 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1988 | A&M

A double-disc live collection, Live...1980-1986 manages to effectively trace the development of Joe Jackson's diverse career. Drawing from four different periods in the songwriter's career -- with each period featuring a new backing band -- Live captures Jackson with his original new wave trio, a 1983 quintet that was dominated by keyboards, a horn-driven group from 1984, and a 1986 quartet that specialized in straight-ahead rock & roll. The resulting album highlights his musical diversity, not his songwriting, which means the record is more intriguing as a historical document than as casual listening © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Jazz - Paru le 25 juin 2012 | earMUSIC

Reconnaissons à Joe Jackson une hardiesse proche de l’inconscience de s’attaquer, si l’on peut dire, à l’un des absolus monuments du jazz, et à une œuvre révérée à peu près partout dans le monde. Et comme tout le monde a un jour dans cette vallée de larmes interprété Duke Ellington, il fallait bien que l’entreprise ait quelque chose de novateur, afin d’attirer l’oreille de l’auditeur lamba.Ainsi, après s’être répandu à longueur de livret sur les différentes péripéties de la carrière et de l’existence du Duke, l’ex-punk britannique a sifflé la fin de la récréation, et a fait appel – enfin, son label – à une noria de célébrités propre à attirer le chaland. Ainsi, le guitariste Steve Vai (pour une fois retenu et impressionniste dans « Isfahan »), Iggy Pop, d’une discrétion confinant à la pure et simple désintégration dans « It Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing) », ou Sharon Jones - elle au moins ne peut être effarouchée par ce projet de relecture – ont répondu favorablement à la sollicitation. Quant à Ahmir Ouestlove Thompson, il figure à plusieurs reprises au générique, en particulier pour un trépidant « Rockin’ In Rhythm’ » capté en direct de la jungle synthétique des studios. Mais, au-delà de ce gratin de célébrités (on a omis de citer Christian McBride), c’est l’approche qu’a Jackson des partitions qui retiendra l’attention. Les thèmes répondent les uns autres, « Caravan » venant imbriquer son dodelinement dans la pièce d’ouverture, différents medleys (dont celui appariant « I’m Beginning To See The Light » et « Take The ‘A’ Train ») brouillant les pistes harmoniques avec jubilation. Par ailleurs, considérer « Perdido » comme l’avant-garde du drum ‘n’ bass relève naturellement du plus pur exercice de style, mais reconnaissons que l’aventure a été menée avec goût et discernement.Á la tête d’une brigade internationale de talents manifestement aguerris, Joe Jackson ne tente pas de s’approprier la grâce initiale des mélodies (allant, choix caractéristique, jusqu’à une version de « Mood Indigo » futée, certes, mais aux antipodes de la délicatesse et de la sensualité de l’enregistrement original), mais prouve sa virtuosité à jeter des ponts entre les genres, les rythmes et les époques. Rien que pour cette raison, cet album mérite amplement qu’on lui prête une oreille recueillie. © ©Copyright Music Story Christian Larrède 2015
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Rock - Paru le 7 mai 1996 | A&M

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Rock - Paru le 29 janvier 2008 | Rykodisc

Joe Jackson's 2003 album, Volume 4, found the songwriter reunited with his original backing band for the first time since 1980, and it was his best and best-received effort in years, with Jackson stepping away from the grander conceits of his work as a "serious" composer and turning back to the pithy but literate pop tunes that had long been his forte. Jackson promised that the reunion with his original band would be a one-off, and technically he's kept his word on Rain -- this album was cut as a trio, with Jackson backed by bassist Graham Maby and drummer Dave Houghton from the original Joe Jackson Band, but without the presence of guitarist Gary Sanford. Minus Sanford, Rain is a bit smoother and more refined than Volume 4, and it's a far cry from the scrappy new wave-inspired rock of Look Sharp! and I'm the Man, but it does show that Jackson learned something from his experience with Volume 4 -- he's better with clever pop songs than trying to write orchestral pieces, and Rain balances sophistication and edgy smarts with a winning mixture of grace and confidence. Jackson's melodies recall the polish and imagination of his work on Night and Day, and his piano work is exceptional here, but the compact arrangements keep the music from getting too florid for its own good, while Maby and Houghton add just the right amount of color and keep the songs moving at a brisk but comfortable pace. Jackson also supplies much of his usual tart wit as a lyricist, pondering his own retreat from A-list stardom in "Invisible Man," taking on photogenic "non-conformists" with "Good Bad Boy," and examining the ups and downs of hedonism in "King Pleasure Time," but Jackson also allows his romantic side to surface here, and "Wasted Time," "Rush Across the Road," and "Too Tough" contemplate love and relationships with a perspective that's mature and honestly heartfelt at the same time. There's less of an air of willful nostalgia about Rain than Volume 4 and the live set Afterlife, but it's still a potent reminder of Joe Jackson's lasting strengths as songwriter and bandleader, proving he hasn't run short on ideas nearly 30 years after releasing his debut. © Mark Deming /TiVo
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Bandes originales de films - Paru le 1 janvier 2014 | Polydor Associated Labels

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Pop - Paru le 1 janvier 1990 | UMC (Universal Music Catalogue)

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Rock - Paru le 1 janvier 1988 | A&M

A double-disc live collection, Live...1980-1986 manages to effectively trace the development of Joe Jackson's diverse career. Drawing from four different periods in the songwriter's career -- with each period featuring a new backing band -- Live captures Jackson with his original new wave trio, a 1983 quintet that was dominated by keyboards, a horn-driven group from 1984, and a 1986 quartet that specialized in straight-ahead rock & roll. The resulting album highlights his musical diversity, not his songwriting, which means the record is more intriguing as a historical document than as casual listening © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop - Paru le 1 octobre 1980 | Polydor Associated Labels

Before exploring jump blues and early R&B on 1981's Jumpin' Jive and later jazz and Latin styles on 1982's Night and Day, Joe Jackson expanded his power pop and punk m.o. with this, his reggae-tinged third album. Jackson sticks with the short songs and punk feel of his first two releases, but strategically adds rocksteady and jazz elements here and there. A direct reggae influence is heard on such dub-style cuts like "In Every Dream Home," while more of a pastiche approach is evident on tracks like "Mad at You." Jackson even riffs off of Linton Kwesi Johnson's dub poetry sides with the dancefloor politics of "Battleground," while also laying down some straight ska on "Pretty Boys." One also gets intimations of the sophisticated jazz-pop songwriting of Night and Day with torching gems like "One to One." As is the case on most of his albums, Jackson covers a wide array of topics here, including modern relationships, feminism, club life, and the social fringe. A solid effort. © Stephen Cook /TiVo

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Joe Jackson dans le magazine