Despite the changes ‘Back In The Circus’ is another solid quality album from a much under rated performer. Those familiar with the works of Jonatha Brooke will know exactly what to expect here. Clever lyrics, good melodies and perfect vocals. Unfortunately they will also be unsurprised to find their attention wandering a little towards the end of the album as things do start to get a little samey on a Brooke album after a while. Of course the good side to that is that if you like her voice then you will enjoy them. It is just a shame that ‘Back In The Circus’ becomes one of those albums that doesn’t require you to actually sit and listen to it attentively. You will happily leave the room for a few minutes without pausing or may start writing a letter or shopping list or something.
For me, the better tracks are towards the beginning of the album, with the exception of ‘Steady Pull’ (one of the replacement tracks, and the title track of the previous album). In fact the two best tracks on the album are ‘Steady Pull’ and ‘Linger’ which are both replacement tracks from the aforenamed album. ‘It Matters Now’ ‘ Back in the Circus’ and ‘Better After All’ are easily the best of the new songs and although ‘Less Than Love Is Nothing’ has a nice vibe the remainder of the album is pleasant but nothing spectacular and the songs can become a little anonymous in retrospect.
In conclusion then I would suggest that this album is a little inferior to the previous one Steady Pull despite including three tracks from it and the follow up ‘Careful What You Wish For’. Newcomers to Jonatha Brooke may be better with Plumb which although being credited to Jonatha Brooke and The Story is to all intents and purposes her first solo album.