Nancy R wrote:
We had been off topic talking about this album in the Egypt Station thread, so I thought I’d move to to the proper thread. I just received the CD that has the 3 extra songs on it that were not on my original vinyl copy - Write Away, It’s Not True and Tough On A Tightrope! Didn’t have time today to listen, but will tomorrow. Have heard It’s Not True On you tube the other day and love it.
Great idea Nancy to move PTP to its own thread.
While I've always been a huge Macca fan as you know, PTP was released at a particularly turbulent time in my life. I was going through a divorce plus I hated my job simultaneously. Relative to Paul, I was admittedly getting a little tired of his "too Pop oriented" and "overplayed singles" after Tug of War which I loved as an album. Because I was also having money difficulties (even for buying an album) I passed on buying PTP in 1986 especially when so many of the music critics were slamming it. Fortunately, I got myself straigtened out personally and things got much better a couple of years later. When Flowers in the Dirt was released in 1989 to very positive reviews, I immediately bought the album and got back on track with Macca. And of course, once Paul started touring again in 1990, I was a full blown fan again. But as I said, PTP escaped me during the period.
As I continued to be a Macca diehard musically (went to all his tours that his my area in Philadelphia and bought all his new releases etc.) I started to get back to the albums I had missed. A few years ago (I believe it was 2015), I saw a PTP Cd in a used record store and bought it immediately. I had the 3 additional tracks on it (from the original album release) that also perked my interest.
As I started to listen to the CD, I must also admit that I didn't have high espectations. Actually my expectations were quite low considering how much I generally loved his music. Again, it was all the negativity surrounding PTP that I was remembering. I also remember the lead single "Press" that I heard on the radio back in the day and that hadn't overwhelmed me. It was just Ok.
Anyway what I found after 2-3 weeks really surprised me. I found the majority of songs were really growing with me and the album as a whole was really good to my ears. I loved certain songs like Stranglehold, Good Times Coming/Feel the Sun, Footprints, Only Love Remains, Move Over Busker as well as the bonus songs...Write Away, It's Not True and Tough on a Tightrope. Even the songs that didn't click immediately were growing with me...Talk More Talk, Pretty Little Head, However Absurd and Angry were becoming pretty good album tracks. To this day, I consider PTP to be one of Paul's most underrated albums and much better in my opinion than some of Paul's mediocre to weaker albums.
I feel bad that I missed out on many of these songs at the time but I also felt great that just 3 years ago I discovered some very good McCartney music from the mid 80's. While Flowers in the Dirt was considered a big comeback for Paul, I actually think it started with PTP. Paul got away from trying to make big hit singles (with generally weak lyrics) to making good and smart albums. But it shows that even big time artists go through periods where the public gets tired of them. It wasn't that PTP was a bad album, it was just its timing was bad for Paul. He needed a few years of being out of the limelight and Flowers in the Dirt (with his Elvis Costello collaborations on half of the album) that became his comeback. But actually many of his songs on PTP were in my opinion very good.
This reopened PTP thread, is getting my motivation to revisit the album. It is hard to keep up with Paul (which it good) but since I first heard PTP, Paul has released the Remastered/Archive edition of Flowers in the Dirt with all the extra songs, his new album Egypt Station and now the last Archive installments...Wildlife and RRS. I now have to revisit PTP to see if I like it as much as i did on my revisit in 2015. One thing that it very optimistic is that PTP is getting far more love than in 1986. On a recent "Take It Away Podcast" that you can hear right here on Maccaboard, both of the commentators and their special guest and author Kit O'toole (I believe that is her name) all felt like I did that PTP is very underrated. Kit actually liked it better than Flowers in the Dirt.
Once I revisit PTP, I will try to get back here with my feelings 3 years later.