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Robbie Williams - Escapology

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Escapology

Robbie Williams

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With the news that Escapology would be the last Robbie Williams album recorded with producer/songwriter phenom Guy Chambers, fans began to wonder whether one of Britain's most durable pop forces would execute a disappearing act from the charts with a single album. Unfortunately, Escapology makes it sound as though Chambers has already left. Backed by stale songs, formulaic arrangements, and mediocre songwriting, Williams is forced to rely on his volcanic personality to bring this album across -- and despite a few strong performances, he sinks into lame self-parody time and time again. It's nearly impossible to reflect seriously on themes he's already broached several times before, as often happens here; "Feel" and "Love Somebody" are the usual looking-for-love songs, the latter with a set of trite lyrics cribbed from 30 years of rock & roll: "Always and forever, is forever young/Your shadow on the pavement, the dark side of the sun/Gotta dream the dream all over and sleep it tight/You don't wanna sing the blues in black and white." The Oasis flag-waver "Something Beautiful" finds Williams trying to keep on despite being tired with the modern world, while "Monsoon" and "Handsome Man" chart the usual celebrity regrets with an odd sense of arrogance and self-deprecation that isn't half as interesting at this point in his career as before. The highlights here are songs that barely would've made it onto Sing When You're Winning (much less his first two albums), and the sound is MOR throughout. Robbie Williams has never been an innovative artist, but previously his strong delivery and sly, ironic wit -- along with savvy production and songwriting -- kept any glimpse of cheese at bay. Escapology shows he's unable to avoid the trap.
© John Bush /TiVo

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Escapology

Robbie Williams

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1
How Peculiar
00:03:13

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Zenia Santini, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

2
Feel
00:04:23

Guy Chambers, Producer, ComposerLyricist - Robbie Williams, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

3
Something Beautiful
00:04:48

G. Chambers, ComposerLyricist - Robbie Williams, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

4
Monsoon
00:03:46

Phil Palmer, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

5
Sexed Up
00:04:21

London Session Orchestra, Orchestra - Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Sally Herbert, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Luis Jardim, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Melvyn Duffy, Pedal Steel, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

6
Love Somebody
00:04:10

London Session Orchestra, Orchestra - Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Harpsichord, Piano, Bass Programming, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Nick Ingman, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Luis Jardim, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Rose Stone, Choir - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

7
Revolution
00:05:44

Ed Stein, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Larry Corbett, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Joel Derouin, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Michelle Escoffery, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Waddy Wachtel, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Leland Sklar, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Sid Page, Strings, Concertmaster, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Ferrone, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Cox, Keyboards, Hammond Organ, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Wayne Bergeron, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Dan Smith, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Rose Stone, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Grant Geissman, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Eve Butler, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Maria Newman, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Nancy Roth, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Tiffany Hu, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Eric Marienthal, Tenor Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - John Witternberg, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Becky Bunnel, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Norm Hughes, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Gina Dorman, Strings, AssociatedPerformer - Carole Castillo, Strings, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

8
Handsome Man
00:03:56

Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Producer, Organ, Piano, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Vocals, Background Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Gary Nuttall, Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Luis Jardim, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Clayton, Sound Effects, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - A Deevoy, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

9
Come Undone
00:04:38

Guy Chambers, ComposerLyricist - Robbie Williams, MainArtist, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

10
Me And My Monkey
00:07:12

Phil Palmer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Neil Taylor, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Greg Leisz, Pedal Steel, AssociatedPerformer - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Alex Acuna, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Sidwell, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Gary Nuttall, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Gardner, Trumpet, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Melvyn Duffy, Pedal Steel, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Bryony Rump, Cello, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

11
Song 3
00:03:50

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, Background Vocalist, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Luis Jardim, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

12
Hot Fudge
00:04:08

Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Sidwell, Horn, AssociatedPerformer - ANDY WALLACE, Hammond Organ, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Neil Sidwell, Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bishop, Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Electric Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Simon Gardner, Horn, AssociatedPerformer - Luis Jardim, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Lee Williams, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

13
Cursed
00:04:01

London Session Orchestra, Orchestra - Neil Taylor, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Josefin Glenmark, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Guy Chambers, Composer, Producer, Piano, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Sally Herbert, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Phil Spalding, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Composer, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Gary Nuttall, Electric Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Jeremy Stacey, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Clayton, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Sharrock, Drum Track, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel - A Deevoy, Composer

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

14
Nan's Song
00:15:38

London Session Orchestra, Orchestra - Guy Chambers, Producer, Acoustic Guitar, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Richard Flack, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Nick Ingman, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer - Robbie Williams, Vocals, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer - Steve Power, Producer, Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Jim Brumby, Engineer, Programmer, StudioPersonnel - Dave Catlin-Birch, Acoustic Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - J.D. Andrew, Assistant Mixer, StudioPersonnel

(C) 2002 In Good Company Co Limited under exclusive licence to Universal Island Records, a division of Universal Music Operations LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2002 Chrysalis Records Ltd, a ℗ 2002 Robert Williams/The In Good Company Co Ltd

Album Description

With the news that Escapology would be the last Robbie Williams album recorded with producer/songwriter phenom Guy Chambers, fans began to wonder whether one of Britain's most durable pop forces would execute a disappearing act from the charts with a single album. Unfortunately, Escapology makes it sound as though Chambers has already left. Backed by stale songs, formulaic arrangements, and mediocre songwriting, Williams is forced to rely on his volcanic personality to bring this album across -- and despite a few strong performances, he sinks into lame self-parody time and time again. It's nearly impossible to reflect seriously on themes he's already broached several times before, as often happens here; "Feel" and "Love Somebody" are the usual looking-for-love songs, the latter with a set of trite lyrics cribbed from 30 years of rock & roll: "Always and forever, is forever young/Your shadow on the pavement, the dark side of the sun/Gotta dream the dream all over and sleep it tight/You don't wanna sing the blues in black and white." The Oasis flag-waver "Something Beautiful" finds Williams trying to keep on despite being tired with the modern world, while "Monsoon" and "Handsome Man" chart the usual celebrity regrets with an odd sense of arrogance and self-deprecation that isn't half as interesting at this point in his career as before. The highlights here are songs that barely would've made it onto Sing When You're Winning (much less his first two albums), and the sound is MOR throughout. Robbie Williams has never been an innovative artist, but previously his strong delivery and sly, ironic wit -- along with savvy production and songwriting -- kept any glimpse of cheese at bay. Escapology shows he's unable to avoid the trap.
© John Bush /TiVo

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