The Stone Roses by the Stone Roses has a very strong start. The laid-back cool of bassy first track I Wanna Be Adored continues throughout the beginning of the album and into the psychedelic fourth track, Don’t Stop. However by the following Bye Bye Badman the style has begun to lose its sheen, and the change of pace in the soft and simple mid-track Elizabeth My Dear seals the deal.
The second half of the album shares the same guitar-led and psychedelia-influenced style of the first half, but the tone no longer has the same grungy allure. The slow but relentless underlying drive of the opening has faded, and the vocals have begun to sound more like the petulant drone that Oasis made their own five years later (with no offence intended to Oasis, who did it very well!).
Part way through the second half there is an unexpected break in the form of Shoot You Down, featuring harmonies and a capella breaks that are a clear reference to the Stone Roses’ musical influences. Paying homage to inspirational sounds is no bad thing, but the beat music style of Shoot You Down is so far removed from the moody and evocative I Wanna Be Adored, that the album that started so promisingly has a rather disappointing finish. The lyrical disparity between the final two tracks highlights the inconsistent nature of this record, and the highly acclaimed four minute instrumental that closes the final track is not enough to change my mixed impressions.