I'm currently working my way through his entire solo output (including Wings), albums, singles, B Sides, 12" remixes, the lot, in strict chronological order, as I tend to do maybe once a year.
Big difference this time round is that I think I've now got everything (in terms of officially released stuff), where as before I always had stuff missing.
Anyway, I'm a couple of weeks in now (I've gone back over and repeated some of the stuff I was less familiar with, like Red Rose Speedway and McCartney II, giving them both several plays) and am, as I type, half way through Press To Play, so a long way still to go!
I love doing this like this in chronological order, you really get a better sense of how things fit, what was ahead of its time, when you first notice a particular style creep in that you know becomes fashionable soon after etc.
Things I've noticed this time around (some of which are of course purely my opinion)-
Thrillington was a great, but frankly ridiculous project, to take on. To have those recordings made at the same time that the regular album was being completed is something that only Paul, and perhaps Brian Wilson, would ever contemplate doing. Genius move, with some great results.
There has often been an accusation levelled at Paul that his solo career was slow at getting out of the blocks, especially in comparison to his 3 special old friends. However, in just 20 months following the split he had released his 3rd album, that's not too shabby!
Red Rose Speedway has gone up in my affections somewhat, as has McCartney II. Back To The Egg and Pipes Of Peace remain the absolute low points.
Venus & Mars absolutely needs an archive collection release, the sound quality could be so much better!
Wings At The Speed Of Sound and London Town were definitely the sound of Paul slipping in to middle age. Thankfully he regained form later (Not that I'm dissing WATSOS, I do like that album, and I will always defend Morse Moose against ANY unfair criticism levelled at it!!)
Arrow Through Me, despite being from the 70s, is pure 80s production and style. Paul ahead of the trend there? (But not in a great way!)
Give My Regards To Broad Street - Thoroughly enjoyed listening to this last night/this morning! Some good new songs on it, some of the interpretations of older songs work better than others, but it turns out I STILL love the Yesterday/Here, There And Everywhere/Wanderlust medley. I'll also make no apologies for still enjoying Eleanor's Dream.
Anyway, 2 songs further on from when I started typing this, Angry is playing, and Press To Play continues its recent resurgence (in my eyes) as a fine album, once you've stripped out those 3 bonus tracks that drag it down.
Not massively looking forward to those 3 bonus tracks that will be up in a few minutes, followed by a plethora of 7 inch and 12 inch remix versions from the Pretty Little Head and Only Love Remains singles. Once they are out of the way, and the painful "Ferry Aid" version of Let It Be, I can start to look forward to the late 80s, and the time period when I became a Macca fan in the first place, with all the first hand memories that will bring