Frank Turner’s sixth album is “Positive Songs for Negative People” and like the five albums before it it’s a thematically romantic romp in a bouncy semi-acoustic fashion. Turner sings the same about the same things, but if you’re a fan like many of us are, chances are you probably won’t mind.
On the sixth album, Turner went away from a lot of what he did on “Tape Deck Heart” and leaned back towards his sound before that record. That album was a varied album with melodic choruses that were perhaps a little too catchy for Frank. “I Still Believe” is certainly an anthem for Turner and his fans and “The Way I Tend to Be” and “Recover” are two defining songs for the Brit, but it’s almost like he heard how different they sounded live compared to rest of his sweat and memory induced acoustic numbers and missed writing those types of songs again because this album is filled with them.
Positive Songs for Negative People has more classic Frank Turner songs with plenty of lyrics about living life to the fullest, moving forward, and making amends emotionally with what you did when you were young and stupid. It’s a message that plenty of people can connect with and it’s the reason why Turner’s shows are so unique. He’s like a motivational speaker with the most attentive audience ever and with this album he’ll have a lot more songs for his familiar messages.
But that’s a bit of what’s stagnant with Turner on this album- its familiarity. Part of the appeal with “Tape Deck Heart” was that it was Turner doing something a little different, he was adding a little pop into his formula. Turner sounds more comfortable on this record than he’s sounded in years. It’s a good thing if you can connect with what he writes about. It’s not if you can’t.
If you like Turner’s earlier work then you’ll end up connecting with “Positive Songs for Negative People”. He’s one of the cooler acts running right now because if you relate to his songs you relate to them on a higher level because his songs are so personal. Turner’s new album is worth a listen and if you like it it’s probably worth a hundred of them.