At The Speed Of Sound

Paul McCartney & Wings

Capitol, 1976

REVIEW BY: Benjamin Ray


The beginning of the end. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Paul McCartney had squandered most of his goodwill in the records leading up to Band On The Run, which earned him some critical respect back, but it seemed that was merely an anomaly. Lennon once denounced Paul's post-Beatle music as Muzak, and on the basis of Speed of Sound, he was right.

I mean, how does a Beatle give in to writing a song like "Let 'Em In," featuring such weighty lyrics as "Someone's knocking at the door / Someone's ringing the bell / Do me a favor, open the door and let 'em in." The song is far too long and repetitions for the very minor reward it gives back.

Part of the problem here is that Paul attempts to remake Wings as a true democracy, meaning Denny Laine and Linda have a bigger say in what goes down. This results in forgettable filler like "Warm and Beautiful," "Cook of the House," "Time to Hide," "She's My Baby," and so on. It doesn't help that Paul seems to be in a bit of a songwriting slump; what other explanation is there for "Silly Love Songs," yet another overly long piece that spoils a catchy bassline with Hallmark lyrics?

Only a couple of tunes really rate as interesting: "Wino Junko" and "San Ferry Anne" are two hidden gems in the Wings catalog, as is the unsettling atmosphere of "Beware My Love," the best song here. Worth seeking out if you are a fan, but few else need apply. This is a minor, lightweight and ultimately unnecessary entry in the Wings/McCartney catalog.

Rating: D+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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