UK markets closed
  • FTSE 100

    7,134.06
    +45.88 (+0.65%)
     
  • FTSE 250

    22,734.13
    +125.37 (+0.55%)
     
  • AIM

    1,249.65
    +3.03 (+0.24%)
     
  • GBP/EUR

    1.1648
    +0.0009 (+0.07%)
     
  • GBP/USD

    1.4117
    -0.0060 (-0.42%)
     
  • BTC-GBP

    25,286.82
    -1,282.49 (-4.83%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    924.19
    -17.62 (-1.87%)
     
  • S&P 500

    4,247.44
    +8.26 (+0.19%)
     
  • DOW

    34,479.60
    +13.36 (+0.04%)
     
  • CRUDE OIL

    70.78
    +0.49 (+0.70%)
     
  • GOLD FUTURES

    1,879.50
    -16.90 (-0.89%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    28,948.73
    -9.83 (-0.03%)
     
  • HANG SENG

    28,842.13
    +103.25 (+0.36%)
     
  • DAX

    15,693.27
    +122.05 (+0.78%)
     
  • CAC 40

    6,600.66
    +54.17 (+0.83%)
     

Rag’n’Bone Man: Life By Misadventure review – a heartfelt follow-up

·1-min read

There’s a lot riding on this second album from bluesman Rag’n’Bone Man, AKA Sussex-born Rory Graham. His 2017 debut, Human, shifted more than 1m copies in the UK. It would have been easy to replicate that album’s rote formula – rootsy production flourishes fused to rugged, stadium-sized MOR remains chart catnip – but instead, Life By Misadventure opens with two delicately plucked, country-tinged singalongs, immediately eschewing Graham’s propensity for the epic.

In fact, aside from galloping lead single All You Ever Wanted, which channels early 00s indie-pop, and the earnest, advert-ready ballad Anywhere Away From Here (a duet with Pink), the songs here feel less eager to please. The pensive Fall in Love Again unfurls delicately, while the darker Party’s Over showcases the album’s main lyrical themes of heartache and emotional rehabilitation.

At 14 songs, however, the album soon starts to sag, with Graham’s approach to emoting – ie sing louder – eventually overwhelming the weaker songs. The chugging, festival-friendly Alone is hobbled by a weak chorus, while Crossfire eyes up George Ezra’s topdown-in-the-summer breezy-rock mantle but is knocked off course by Graham’s throaty honk. It’s in the smaller moments that Graham seems most comfortable, a sign perhaps of what’s next.