On his latest album, he continues to strip back the Punk affectations and the emphasis is on the folky singer-songwriter.
Not that that is a "bad" thing, but the Punky bit was the one thing that gave his records a bit of excitement, an air of urgency, anthemic-ness, and a bit of a hook.
'No Mans Land' is a concept album (of sorts) - a collection of 13 songs celebrating women through history and their stories.
Mr Turner describes it thus: "an album dedicated to telling the fascinating stories of women whose incredible lives have all too often been overlooked by dint of their gender."
And he goes one stage further by engaging a female producer and a plethora of female musicians.
A concept and delivery that cannot be denigrated, but I do have the feeling of "trying too hard" about it. There is nothing wrong with a group of songs focussing on worthy people, or indeed employing female musicians as your backing band.
It's only when you make a point of highlighting this fact does it become less about the content and more about the conceit.
Am I supposed to listen to these songs in a different way? Am I supposed to take some education or thought from them? By highlighting and celebrating a perceived minority, are you not re-enforcing that minority status?
But I quibble - this (his eighth album) is a good album housing 13 well written, well played tunes. None of which jar on first listen, and each holding enough to warrant repeated listening.
Indeed, the second listen was more rewarding than the first
And then it hit me - my error on first listen was expecting a Frank Turner album.
Yes, it's his name on the cover, he does the songwriting and singing, but it is more of a Frank Turner "project" than a Frank Turner "album"
Suspending my expectations, I can report that this album is (nearly) "All killer, no filler" - maybe not "All killer", but there are no whiffs of filler about it.
Sometimes his (possibly affected) Street Busker accent takes over, but generally the songs do the job they intended to of telling a story against a musical back-drop. And that backdrop is not one dimensional radio friendly pop-folk (or whatever genre Frank is now ploughing?), there's a bit of Country & Western ("The Death Of Dora Hand"), a jazz diversion complete with saxophone ("Nica"), and almost a bit of Tudor Minstrel going on peppered throughout (notable on opener "Jinny Binghams Ghost"). And there are just a couple of tunes that sound vaguely recognisable, but are not wholesale nicks from elsewhere.
Having said that, the album does contain a re-record of "Silent Key" (from 2015s 'Positive Songs for Negative People'). For me, that song didn't sit comfortably on that album, but works in this setting.
If nothing else, it has got me searching wikipedia for more information about the songs subjects.
So maybe I was supposed to take some education from this "project".
The Death Of Dora Hand