Can’t Touch Us Now – An Album Review

October 28th, 2016 was a great day for a twelfth album release. I mean, who doesn’t have respect for a group that’s been at it since 1979.

How did I come across this album you ask? Like everyone else, one song in particular caught my ear on the radio–one they were renowned for and a song so popular I feel the song took more glory and recognition than the group.

So let me ask you what I asked everyone else: who sings the song with the line “our house in the middle of our street”? Yes, the song is called “Our House”, and yes, all the older guys could instantly get back into the tune from that single line–which was quite spectacular to witness each time.

But no, none of them–not one–could guess the artist. In 1982, the world’s ears were touched by the instant-hit single “Our House”. It was from the group’s fourth studio album which released November 12th of that year. Yes, FOURTH album release since their first in October of 1979.

In essence, that alone sort of leads up to the title given to the group’s latest piece.

Can’t Touch Us Now is the twelfth album released by the decadal group Madness. I’d never heard of them before, but when “Our House” played on the radio that one eventful day, I was hooked to it. That lead to me finding out just how long the group has been at it–something that in-of-itself is inspiring and I have much respect to them for that alone, regardless of if I’m not a fan all their tunes.

That being said, Can’t Touch Us Now is quite the gem in my opinion. The perfect blend of the Beetles feel with the New Pornographers vibe (and yes, I hate the name, but good music).

The album is what I would call an “era gem”. It takes me to a specific era, time, and place. I really feel like its a walk through a “London era” from the 80s and my goodness is it refreshing.

The album is filled with jewels and sixteen tracks to choose from. I found the son and I boogieing down to the bulk of them from tracks like “Grandslam” and “Mumbo Jumbo” to “Herbert” and “Don’t Leave the Past Behind You”. I love the tracks, the lyrics, and the stories told within. There is something refreshing about music that can take you back to older days through BOTH the instruments/vocals and the lyrics contained.

That being said, I do have my favorites from the album as well. I absolutely love the tracks “I Believe“, “Blackbird“, “Pam the Hawk“, and “Soul Denying” and highly recommend you checking them out if you’re interested in trying them.

Otherwise, Madness will be Madness. I have found that though what albums I have begun listening through, they miraculously manage to keep to their unique sound–something many fans often grow tired of, but in light of 40 years of music, it becomes reliable and a “classic Madness”. I have fallen in love with their twelfth album completely through and through and look forward to venture back through the many many many other years of their music.

Here’s to Madness! ❤


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