the waterboys

The Waterboys

‘Where the Action Is’

Released: May 24

Label: Cooking Vinyl

The liner notes to the Waterboys’ latest album credit frontman Mike Scott for vocals, guitar, keyboards, bass — and “archaeology.” And “Where the Action Is” does indeed offer an entertaining survey of music history in 10 songs.

The title track, which opens the album, is a bracing cover of Robert Parker’s 1960s soul gem with updated lyrics. “You can fool the whole world with just one tweet,” Scott sings.

Most ambitious is the closing “Piper at the Gates of Dawn,” inspired by Kenneth Grahame’s 1908 novel “The Wind in the Willows.” For nearly nine minutes Scott speaks over a simple piano pattern as he describes an enchanting vision.

On “Where the Action Is,” the best archaeology is self-referential.

KEY CUTS: “Piper at the Gates of Dawn”

— Steven Wine, Associated Press

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