Boomkat Product Review:
Quite presciently, the disgraced pop impresario Jonathan King wrote of Scott Walker in his liner notes to Scott 2: "I have no doubt that many years from now over a space age dinner of vitamins [...] he will say: "Well the last fifty years have been great fun, but now we must get down to doing something worthwhile". And he'll mean it."
Of course the last few decades haven't quite worked out as Jonathan King would have envisaged - not for him at least - but he wasn't too far wrong about Walker taking a turn towards a more serious music later in his career, via the incredible Tilt (1995) and The Drift (2006).
Scott 2 marked something of a full stop in Walker's career too though, prompting the artist to make a concerted departure from the bombastic theatricalities of the Brel and Bacharach/David songs covered here in favour of more earnest, self-penned work. That's not to say this album is mere fluff and whimsy though: in amongst such stage school extravagances as Brel's 'Jackie', we're presented with glimmers of Walker's genius, as in 'Plastic Palace People', an early but enduring classic.
Scott 2 was released almost precisely forty years ago, and to this day, despite being described by the man himself as the "work of a lazy, self indulgent man." it's still a towering piece of work, uneven in tone but ultimately resolved by Walker's profound talent.