James Blunt – The Afterlove
“If you thought 2016 was bad,” tweeted self-effacing popstar James Blunt last year, “I’m releasing an album in 2017”. The You’re Beautiful singer is undoubtedly one of the wittiest stars of social media, but does this transpose to musical ability? Well, he’s had four hit albums already, and for this, he’s had help: his pal Ed Sheeran has penned some of the tracks, while a host of other time-served songwriters have also chipped in. The result is as polished as one would expect, but it’s also uninspiring. Lead single Love Me Better was his lowest-charting in almost a decade. Follow-up Bartender is no better, with its hackneyed refrain: “Bartender can you pour me some love?” Not bad, by any means - but unlike his Twitter feed - it’s far from great.