Baader Meinhof – Baader Meinhof
CD Album, 1996
Luke Haines is a much needed thorn in the side of the pop music world. Saying that I don't enjoy everything by him, because a lot of his work is very 'forced' and often I feel like rolling my eyes upward, but alas, even that is perfectly OK. I feel there is a strong moral outrage in his viewpoint of the world, and I can identify with that. His strong points is that he knows the pop format, and even though I think he's on the wrong side of genius, in that he's very studied songwriter. Haines has an understanding how pop songwriting works, in many ways it is sort of a text-book example in how to do it or not to do it.
This album focuses on the German terrorist group from the '70's, which is an unusual theme for a pop songwriter. But Haines as a provocateur is what makes him so enjoyable in the end of the day. The arrangements on this album is pretty good – the mixture of electric guitar and strings is a winning situation and Haines has an understanding of that dynamic. So I am not crazy about this album, but I appreciate in what he is trying to do. I admire that in a man.