The Charlatans – Different Days – 2017 Vinyl LP, BMG Records
Vinyl LP pressing. For this new album, the core quartet of vocalist Tim Burgess, bassist Martin Blunt, guitarist Mark Collins and keyboard player Tony Rogers, opened their doors to allow an enviable cast of friends to contribute to their latest work. Initially, this happened out of necessity: following the passing of founding drummer Jon Brookes in 2013. So the first call went to Pete Salisbury, the former Verve drummer. Anton Newcombe from Brian Jonestown Massacre was sent an early version of “Not Forgotten” and had sent back some thoughts within 15 minutes.
The admiration for the bands’ new ideas continued, Johnny Marr dropped by for an hour but stayed for five and features on three songs including lead single “Plastic Machinery.” Similarly, Stephen Morris, of New Order, who briefly helped out on Modern Nature, extended his role on this album to seven tracks of drumming and programming. Both Ian Rankin and Kurt Wagner offer spoken word contributions and Catastrophe writer/actress, and old friend of Tim’s, Sharon Horgan sings backing vocals on Different Days. As the spirit of collaboration prospered, Burgess fast-tracked a long discussed team-up with Paul Weller, the expansive, album finale “Spinning Out.” Different Days follows on from the success of The Charlatans last album Modern Nature which drew critical praise across the board, and notched up their eighth Top Ten, all capped off with a lifetime achievement award from Q magazine.