Album review: Billy Bragg, Tooth & Nail (Cooking Vinyl)


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The Independent Culture

The Bard of Barking's first album in five years opens unpromisingly with the glum “January Song” and “No One Knows Nothing Anymore”.

Only much later, in “There Will Be a Reckoning”, does the familiar Bragg anger kick in significantly: it's his “Masters of War”, aimed at the “peddlers of hate”, but it's outnumbered here by more sensitive songs about things like relationship difficulties (“Over You”, “Your Name On My Tongue”) and dying (“Goodbye, Goodbye”).

Woody Guthrie's “I Ain't Got No Home” fits in perfectly, its protagonist buffeted rather than bellicose.

Download: Swallow My Pride; Your Name on My Tongue; There Will Be a Reckoning