YUSEF/CAT STEVENS

The Laughing Ap­ple ★★★ Cat-O-Log Records/Decca

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - MUSIC REVIEWS - TONY CLAYTON-LEA

Any­one who was at the Yusef/Cat Stevens con­cert in Dublin’s O2 (as it was called then) more than sev­eral years ago would have wit­nessed, bizarrely, a sec­tion of the mid­dle-aged au­di­ence voic­ing dis­con­tent at any song that wasn’t Morn­ing Has Bro­ken or Moon­shadow. This al­bum is for that un­likely rowdy fan­base, for it’s as close to the man’s clas­sic bed­sit-era records (1970’s Tea for the Tiller­man, 1971’s Teaser and the Fire­cat) as you can get with­out go­ing back in time. Which is, fun­nily enough, ex­actly what Yusef has done – here be a batch of his like­able folk-pop songs from the late 1960s, re­vis­ited, un­earthed and re­fur­bished. It’s a use­ful re­minder that, 50 years after he first landed in the UK al­bum charts (with de­but Matthew

and Son), you can take the man out of pop mu­sic but not vice versa. cat­stevens.com

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