Mark Owen: The Art of Doing Nothing

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GOODNESS ME. Hopes were not high when Mark Owen announced his fourth solo album and first since Take That’s reformation.
Received wisdom had it that Gary Barlow and Robbie Williams, not little Mark, were the pop princes who made 2010’s Progress such a triumph.
Well, yet again, received wisdom is apparently wrong. The Art of Doing Nothing may not quite on a par with Progress but it’s certainly streets better than we dared hope for.
Single Stars boasts a chorus that is catchy but not obvious – you don’t feel like an 11-year-old on realising you’re singing along on first listen – while, despite its trite lyrics , The One is a smile of a song, the kind of euphoric pop blinder than Mark and TT do better than anybody else.
Elsewhere, there’s African rhythms (Carnival), experiments with rap (Heaven’s Falling) and, in The End of Everything, proof that he knows better than most how to end an album.
Mark Owen’s only gone and made a top class pop record. Who’d have thought it?

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