VAN MORRISON ‘What’s It Gonna Take’


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After falling into the inevitable elder statesman’s trap of recording jazz and American songbook songs at the end of the last decade, Van Morrison broke through the COVID column inches with his trio of headline-grabbing anti-lockdown songs. Following last year’s 28-track Latest Recording Project, Volume 1, Van the Man carries on in a similar anti-establishment vein with another collection of original songs on What’s It Gonna Take? with titles like Fodder For The Masses and Fighting Back Is The New World Normal.

The new album features fifteen new Van Morrison compositions that collectively reflect the Belfast native’s drive to record and perform live in front of audiences.
After the opener Dangerous, which pokes fun at Morrison’s status as the pot-stirring, sneering cynic, the rest of the album’s lyrics are obsessed with lying politicians and a brainwashed nation. All good points to discuss, but most of it is just too on the nose, with the joyless hook from Sometimes It’s Just Blah Blah Blah preceded by lines like “how did you overcome the restrictions?” A shame, as the arrangements and playing on What’s It Gonna Take? are tasteful in the extreme and Van Morrison’s voice sounds as good as any time over the last couple of decades.