Clash (magazine) - "The songs are catchy and there are some legitimately laugh-out-loud moments but more notably, for the most part Brent as you've always known him and he's taking this very seriously."
Audio Mixer: Nick Taylor .
Recording information: Air Edel Studios, London.
There are a number of theories as to why Ricky Gervais chose to resurrect David Brent: was it for the money or simply for the love of a great character? The theory that stands out takes into account the wider context. Not only has Gervais re-donned his Brent persona, but he took him on tour with a band and released an album -- the latter of which doesn't happen in Brent's fictional world -- all pointing towards the possibility that a full-length Brent record is largely Gervais indulging his abandoned dreams of being in a band himself.
Although Brent's musical aspirations are hinted at over the course of The Office's two seasons, it wasn't until 2013 that Gervais was given an opportunity to embellish them, in the form of the Comic Relief charity single "Equality Street." With the waters tested and a taste of musical recognition, for both Gervais and Brent, the wheels were set in motion for a feature-length film and a meta-debut record. The amount of fun to be had with the soundtrack depends on how much of a fan you are, as the highlights are served with a large side of nostalgia, including fan favorites "Spaceman," "Paris Nights," "Equality Street," and "Freelove Freeway." The remaining tracks fall into two categories: songs that are meant to be comedy and songs that sound like they want to be taken seriously. Opening number "Ooh La La" falls into the latter group, sounding as if it was lifted from a straight-up classic rock album. Then there are the overtly comedic tracks, which work best when they reference Brent's life, such as the anthemic "Life on the Road" or heartfelt ballad "Slough," or when they include a slightly odd verse from rapper Doc Brown.
From "Don't Cry It's Christmas" onwards, the record shifts from a token seasonal song and the vocoder-centric "Spaceman" to a reggae double-header before landing at the Chris Martin collaboration -- and Coldplay imitation -- "Electricity," packing in a variety of styles that differ from the first two-thirds of the album. Seeing as this is ultimately Brent's album, existing for comedic reasons purely to accompany the film, then it fulfills its purpose with plenty for fans to enjoy. ~ Liam Martin