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Posted by on Jul 26, 2023 in Music, News, Powerpop, pub rock |

Graham Parker & The Goldtops – Last Chance to Learn the Twist

Graham Parker & The Goldtops – Last Chance to Learn the Twist

Last Chance to Learn the Twist is Graham Parker’s 24th album, not including 2019’s the Squeezing Out Sparks acoustic release of 2019. I bought all of them (except said acoustic album) so call me a fan. I’ve always appreciated Parker for his lyrical wit, biting commentary and most of all, soul. All are on full display with his one – especially the soul.

parker last chance cover

The song structure of the opening track, “The Grand Scheme of Things”, differs from the Graham Parker we’re used to. However, Martin Belmont’s guitar and Geraint Watkins’ keyboards immediately take one home to a familiar place that is vintage GP. And with Jim Russell on drums, the listener is in good hands.

Parker bares his soul in the piano driven “It Mattered To Me”. He delivers his songs with the passion we expect from a great writer- and the song benefits from the excellent work of The Easy Access Orchestra. They are James Morton (Tenor Sax), Andrew Ross (Baritone Sax) and Ralph Lamb (Trumpet, Trumpet Cornet).

Wicked Wit that Doesn’t Quit

The more upbeat “Wicked Wit” is a real earworm. The horns are magnificent. “Shorthand” is a lyrical wonder and Belmont’s tasteful guitar work make this one really special. But the best tracks are saved for last.

If the album has a theme, it’s mortality. “Lost Track of Time” is a look back at all those years on life’s merry-go-round. It’s no accident that the musicians involved include a couple of guys who have been an integral part of the scene for over five decades. Similar can be said for “Last Stretch of the Road”. It is perhaps my favorite track here and the song from which the album gets its title.

Last Chance to Learn the Twist is a rare glimpse of a dog who, after over 50 years in the business, can still learn a new trick or two. Maybe even twist.

Get Last Chance to Learn the Twist

Graham Parker’s latest is yet another outstanding Big Stir release. This label is developing quite the catalog so check out their other releases if you haven’t already. With a release date of September 8, you can pre-order your copy of Graham Parker’s Last Chance to Learn the Twist at the Big Stir web page.