Here - after a good few plays - is my review of Dead Son Rising:
Dead Son Rising is an interesting release for Gary Numan, delayed by several years, briefly abandoned altogether and finally transformed into a dark and varied album, guaranteed to have something for every Numan fan.
Produced and co-written with Ade Fenton, Dead Son Rising has been fashioned from unfinished songs and demos, some of which date back to 1997's Exile. The result is a curious mix, containing some of Numan's most atmospheric and diverse tracks for years, with the finished songs bearing little resemblance to the original demos.
Numan's emotional outpouring on tracks such as "Not the Love We Dream Of" and "For the Rest of My Life" has to rank alongside his classic electro-ballads such as "Sleep By Windows" and "A Child With the Ghost", while heavier stomping tracks such as "Big Noise Transmission" and single, "The Fall" follow the industrial style present on Pure and Jagged.
While instrumental tracks "Resurrection" and "Into Battle" leave little to be desired (you can't help but feel that more could have been done with them) Dead Son Rising has a dark cinematic quality to it, and boasts some of the best production heard on any Numan album to date, with Gary's vocals coming across crisp and clear. The real standout track for me is the epic "Dead Sun Rising" (note the play on words), where Numan returns to his sci-fi roots, exploring similar themes to those on his early albums.
Overall, Dead Son Rising has indeed risen from the dusty corners of the Numan studio and is at last with us, after many a false start. It has evolved into an album in its own right, with echoes of Pure, Jagged and to some extent, Sacrifice.
By Numan standards, there is a great deal of experimentation on the album, some of which works better than others; We Are the Lost", sounds frankly, lost, and the piano versions of "Not the Love We Dream Of" and "For the Rest of My Life (Reprise)", feel like nothing more but padding. But overall, after the muddy, over-complicated and samey sound of Jagged, Dead Son Rising presents Gary Numan in a new light – or dark – and as his first new material for five years, it will no doubt delight those who first caught sight of him at the NIN concerts in 2009 or have discovered him through his appearance on The Mighty Boosh. Who would have ever thought that?!