Produced by Jay Kay, Mike Spencer
Label – Sony
So little has changed since a young Wonder-wannabe burst on the scene in 1992, with his bizarre headgear and strictly retro Adidas Gazelle sneakers. The Iraq War, a Bush in the Whitehouse, and an unpopular British Government gripped by the aftermath of the Thatcher years were all back drops to his anti-war breakthrough single “We’re Too Young To Die”. So we move on 13 years and where do we find ourselves ?
War in Iraq, a Bush in the Whitehouse, and an unpopular British Government surrounded by sleaze are the backdrop to the latest single by that same Wonder wannabe (“Don’t Give Hate A Chance”). The music has changed little too, still the same jazz fused funk and disco, drenched in 1970’s iconography and studiously formulated, Jamiroquai know where their strength lie, and each album since their 1992 debut has followed a similar well worn trek. They continue to receive the same dismissive reviews from an under-whelmed rock press and yet continue to remain popular. The success has been based on an ability to continue to find light, airy, hook filled singles, added by a strong fan base who really couldn’t give a damn for what others think because they just want to dance.
Jamiroquai’s 6th original release is as slick as their 2001 “Funk Odyssey” if a little less immediate. There are still some obvious hit singles, which include the excellent bared down Soul of “Seven Days In Sunny June”, the expansive funk of “Starchild” and “Feels Just Like It Should”, and the “Off The Wall” sounding closer, “Time Won’t Wait”. There’s an excellent surprise in the rock work out “Black Devil Car”, which makes one think that maybe a harder follow up to this would be an interesting alternative. And that’s where the musical limitations start to work their way into your mind. Although there is still quality material to be found on “Dynamite” one feels that the formula needs a shake up; something more experimental, more sonically challenging for the listener to embrace. But then, Jamiroquai have found their well heeled groove, and the fans would say why change winning ways?
“Dynamite” finds Jamiroquai have still got the groove, but one feels that there is a prevalent “nothing left to prove” attitude on this recording. Next time, stretch yourself guys!
1. “Feels Just Like It Should” Jay Kay 4:34
2. “Dynamite” Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 4:57
3. “Seven Days in Sunny June” Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 3:59
4. “Electric Mistress” Rob Harris, Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 3:56
5. “Starchild” Rob Harris, Jay Kay 5:13
6. “Love Blind” Rob Harris, Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 3:35
7. “Talullah” Rob Harris, Jay Kay 6:04
8. “(Don’t) Give Hate a Chance” Rob Harris, Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 5:02
9. “World That He Wants” Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 3:14
10. “Black Devil Car” Rob Harris, Jay Kay 4:45
11. “Hot Tequila Brown” Rob Harris, Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 4:40
12. “Time Won’t Wait” Rob Harris, Matt Johnson, Jay Kay 5:01
Feels Just Like It Should
Seven Days In Sunny June
(Don’t) Give Hate A Chance