Tuesday, 25 August 2009

'Join.The.Dots' - The Nextmen (album review)

Ever since The Nextmen created my most favourite DJ mix ever (on Radio 1) and released tracks with the likes of Ty and Rodney P I’ve checked for their movements. Their latest album ‘Join.The.Dots’ is out now and I thought I’d share my thoughts.

First off, and overall, it’s a great album and one worth your moolah. Secondly, if you didn’t like the lead single ‘The Lion’s Den’ featuring Ms. Dynamite, don’t let that put you off – it’s definitely my least favourite track on the album.

The title track is an enticing instrumental with enough variation to keep a beats and breaks fan happy. ‘Round of Applause’ is fully vocalled up by long time collaborator Dynamite MC as he chats breezily about a good-looking lady. The quality of the vocal contributions on the LP is second to none – the cutesy voiced Betty Steeles provides a chilled and less mainstream alternative to Lily Allen on ‘Whisper Up’ and Kivanc puts down some sung melodies on ‘Love Someone’ – both of these tracks rock a great reggae vibe. Singer Jonny Tarr, ragga rapper Jimmy Screech and songstress Lindsay West also feature on excellent and differing tracks covering Hip Hop Soul, Dancehall and Big Beat Trip Hop productions respectively.

‘Stay at Home’ doesn’t sit with the rest of the album with it’s dancy, clubby sound although ‘Red Setter’, another instrumental vaguely reminiscent of the 90s 2 Step garage craze, is a nice brief excursion.

The Nextmen make music as close to easy listening as Hip Hop gets – ‘Join.The.Dots’ is not a strenuous listen and it’s one you can pop on with your non-Hip Hop mates – even they’ll appreciate it. It’s out now on Universal and can be bought just about everywhere.

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