REDUX: Paul Buchanan

For those of us who have been quietly pining for a new album from the legendary Scottish trio The Blue Nile, hearts were gladdened when word came that frontman and songwriter Paul Buchanan was self-releasing a solo album Mid Air in the U.K. Even better news came last week when we learned that Mid Air will be released in the U.S. October 30 with the bonus second disc of rarities, demos and remixes. Formed in 1981 and releasing only four albums between 1984 and 2004, The Blue Nile became as beloved as they were commercially unsuccessful and whose self-titled debut and second album Hats (1989) have been pegged by both fans and critics alike as two of the greatest and most influential alt-pop albums of the past 30 years. At the heart of the band was Buchanan, a singer whose remarkable voice still sounds as distinctive and tender as ever on Mid Air, a project he describes as more of a "recordette" adding, "it's quite small in stature and the songs are very brief, but don't get me wrong - it kept me awake at night." Is it new Nile? No -- and Buchanan is quick to point out that fans shouldn't see (or hear) it as such. Still, tracks like "News Room", "My True Country" and the title track give us a glimpse of the extraordinary writing style and graceful tone we've come to expect.

Paul Buchanan - "Mid Air" (from the album Mid Air)

Paul Buchanan - "My True Country" (from Mid Air -- free download)

In Air Tracklisting:

  1. Mid Air
  2. Half The World
  3. Cars In The Garden
  4. Newsroom
  5. I Remember You
  6. Buy A Motor Car
  7. Wedding Party
  8. Two Children
  9. Summer’s On Its Way
  10. My True Country
  11. A Movie Magazine
  12. Tuesday
  13. Fin De Siècle
  14. After Dark

Bonus Disc (Deluxe Version):

  1. Have You Ever Been Lonely?
  2. My True Country (Piano)
  3. After Dark (Instrumental)
  4. Two Children (Piano)
  5. Lost
  6. Tuesday (Instrumental)
  7. Half The World (Demo)
  8. A Movie Magazine (Instrumental)
  9. Mid Air (Demo)
  10. God Is Laughing

The original video for "Downtown Lights" from the album Hats