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ALBUM REVIEW: Jamiroquai – Automaton

Howdy ladies and gents, how’s it going? Today I’m doing a music review, yes, one of those! Its been almost 2 years since I reviewed Jack White’s Lazaretto album in 2015, but I knew I had to come back and talk about this album in particular. For those not aware, Jamiroquai are my favourite band of all time, I’ve been listening to their music since childhood and the wait for their 8th album, Automaton, has been the longest and most painful wait of any album in recent memory (other than Red Hot Chili Peppers’ The Getaway). So after listening to the album 3 times and finally getting free to blog I’m ready to review it!

Like I mentioned above, I’ve been jamming to Jamiroquai since childhood, probably around 1996 with the sounds of “Virtual Insanity“, “Cosmic Girl” and “Space Cowboy (Classic Radio Mix)” being my video into their sound. After that I had all of their main singles until 2004 and 2005 when I got The Return of the Space Cowboy and Dynamite and that’s when I really dove deep into their song and became a fan for life. Back in 2010 I really liked Rock Dust Light Star, I will admit it did take a few listens to truly appreciate some of the songs, but on the whole I thought it was solid. But after a while of hearing little to no updates as to when the next album would drop, especially after 2015, I thought I’d be waiting forever for something new. But thankfully 2017 was the year when Jamiroquai reemerged and I couldn’t be happier.

Now before we continue I just want to say as I always do, I’m no music buff, I just like the sound of music and like many people in the world I have an opinion. So don’t kill me if I don’t use the right technical jargon when I’m describing the music okay? Good, let’s continue.

So to start things off, Automaton is a damn good album, there’s no two ways about it. Jamiroquai have come back with a sound that is familiar, yet fresh and it has one hell of a presence. The best way to describe the sound of this album would be if Jamiroquai took the funk, disco and electronic sounds they’ve done in the past and mixed it in with some Daft Punk and this album would be the end result. It is not like the band have completely abandoned their acid jazz flare completely as there are increments that can be found throughout the album, but this album feels more like a follow-up to A Funk Odyssey with elements taken from Rock Dust Light Star too. Automaton has an eclectic set of songs and yet they all work in cohesion with each to create a wonderful listening experience which is fun, upbeat, heartfelt and groovy as hell.

The album begins with “Shake It On“, and it is good way to open the album with an upbeat and groovy song with a lovely chorus and has a mixture of electronic, funk and disco sounds. And then we have “Automaton“, the first single released from this album and I don’t care what some fans say, I love this song. Upon first listen it was a little strange with the flow of the music, distorted sound effects and modulated vocals of Jay during the verses, but once that chorus kicked in, the song had me. And since then the songs only become more addictive with its futuristic electronic sound with a bit of that classic sound sprinkled in around 3:25. “Cloud 9” was the next single released from the album and good gravy is it a good one, unlike “Automaton” which rubbed some fans the wrong way, this song feels more in line with the sound that the band’s done before. It is a chilled out and very groovy kind of song that gets better with every listen, and part of the reason I like so much is it feels a little like a combination of Daft Punk and Justice. “Superfresh” is another nice track that has a marvelously crafted disco-like sound that opens well and has a lovely chorus too.

And there’s “Hot Property“, good gravy that song is awesome. The way the song starts up with that bass and main melody, it reminded me of “Supersonic“, from there you have a song with a catchy chorus, a lovely breakdown around 2.27  which switches perfectly back into the normal sound around 3.10, the song is great especially for dancing. Something About You” is an enchanting little song that’s chilled out and not as flashy as some of the other songs on the album, but it has a feel-good vibe, its relaxed and has the lovely Jay Kay vocals too. This was when I was really getting those Daft Punk vibes where I was reminded of songs like “Something About Us” and “Fragments in Time“, very different songs but sort of similar in feel. I also really enjoyed around 2.41 where the guitarist is definitely channelling that Nile Rodgers style of work, and the final minute or so of the song with whimsical music and wonderful vocals, its magical to me. Then there’s “Summer Girl“, on my first listen this became my favourite song on the album. It feels like a spiritual successor to the band’s free song “Smile” from 2011. It’s GORGEOUS, the way it flows, and perfectly captures not only the vibe of summer and that feeling of elation when you’re in a relationship, but also channels that perfect Jamiroquai song it is insane. This song  is pretty much perfection to my ears with the groovy music, incredible chorus and the blend of Jay Kay and the female backing vocalists works perfectly together. “Nights Out in the Jungle” is a song on my first listen I kind of liked, but on subsequent listens I’ve dug it more and more. I like the beat, the chorus is addictive and it has a subdued yet playful nature to it.

Dr Buzz” stood out a lot on my first listen just because it felt more story-driven, dramatic and atmospheric, and yet it is still incredible. There’s a melancholy and somber tone that I get from this song and yet there’s so much beauty to be found from the musical composition (shout outs to the saxophone and guitar work towards the end of the song), but there’s also the vocals which are amazing especially with the verses, and chorus. Then there’s “We Can Do It” which has a nice sound and vocals, but it is my least favourite song on the album just because it doesn’t really grab me like other tracks. “Vitamin” is a song that caught me off-guard with its crazy upbeat tempo, ferocity and intensely groovy sounds, and yet it got its hooks into me and I feel in love. It feels like a true transformation/transition of the Jamiroquai sound from the late 90’s to now with the new beats and classic instrumentation. And the album ends with “Carla“, a track that’s wonderful in its music composition, and has great vocals, but what makes the song so special is the fact that its tribute to Jay Kay’s daughter which can clearly be heard in the lyrics and its beautiful.

My favourite songs for this album is tough as the whole album is pretty much amazing, but if I had to narrow it down these would be my choices:

  • Automaton
  • Cloud 9
  • Superfresh
  • Hot Property (personal favourite)
  • Something About You (personal favourite)
  • Summer Girl (personal favourite)
  • Dr Buzz (personal favourite)
  • Vitamin (personal favourite)

In conclusion Jamiroquai’s Automaton is a fabulous album that gives you what you want as a fan of this band, but at the same time they deliver new sounds which you didn’t know you wanted until I hear them. The album is great to listen to if you want to dance or chill out, it’s just delightful and I’m SO happy that Jamiroquai are bringing the funk back. If you’re a fan you owe it to yourself to check this album out if you haven’t already, it is one delicious session! 😀

Rating: 9/10 (This is the sound you need in your system)

 
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Posted by on April 14, 2017 in Media, Music, Reviews

 

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Jamiroquai – Automaton (Single) Review

Howdy ladies and gents, how’s it going? Normally I would be here to give you a film review, however that is not the case today as the first single from Jamiroquai’s upcoming 8th album has been released and I just have to talk about it!

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Let me just start by saying if you didn’t know already I am a MASSIVE Jamiroquai fan, have loved them since childhood and just behind the Red Hot Chili Peppers they are my all-time favourite band. It was also a life goal to see them live and I got to live that dream in summer 2013. And so their last album Rock Dust Light Star came out in 2010 and I have been waiting for what feels like an eternity for some new material, following every tiny bit of information about the band, their studio time and what not, and I knew something would be going down this year, but I had no clue the info would drop so soon. In the last week we got info on the name of the album, track listing, tour dates and locations, a teaser for the music video of the first single, and when the first single would get its first play.

Yesterday I saw on Twitter that the song would drop on Jo Whiley’s show on BBC Radio 2 so I downloaded the app just to hear it and unfortunately I didn’t catch the whole thing because I got lost in a game demo, but I caught the last half of it and what I heard, I liked. 🙂 Then I found out the song, “Automaton” would be officially released today and now that I’ve heard the song in full and seen the video I’m ready to give my thoughts on it.

Here’s the song:

Firstly let me talk about the song itself, wow, what a jam, it sounds so good. The cool thing is, it is different and familiar and I’m really feeling the style of music. The best way to describe the song is that it feels primarily electronic with disco mixed in. I felt shades of A Funk Odyssey and Rock Dust Light Star but with a Daft Punk edge from the Tron: Legacy soundtrack. During the first verse the difference in sound did take a little adjusting, but once that chorus kicks in with Jay Kay’s gorgeous vocals, everything slots into place. But then towards the latter side of the song there’s a lovely breakdown where the song taps into the more familiar Jamiroquai sound with the funky disco sounds and it feels so nice! I feel like this song is an evolution of the sound from “White Knuckle Ride” but on another level. This sound is bold, in your face and just oozing with flair and personality.

As for the music video, I really liked it. I watched it around an hour ago so I may miss some details, but I thought it was very sci-fi/otherworldly with Jay Kay playing some kind of man who was either: 1) A cyborg. 2) A human with robotic tendencies. Or 3) An alien. Either way it was an interesting video to watch this character move through the underground train stations, abandoned trains, out in the fields and in the room with that other guy watching all those monitors among other places. And that ending when he found the hat (which I believe is the same one from the cover of the High Times compilation album from 2006) I got so giddy, but then UFO’s showed up with a spotlight on him and that was a crazy, the way I interpreted the video was that this character was an alien sent to earth to learn and somehow contact his people to get picked up. I liked the colour scheme of the video, from the outdoor locations, to the glowing robot hat to the cool mirror room Jay was moving around in, plus this was the first video in ages to see Jay Kay dancing again and it was hella fun to see him busting some moves on the underground.

So that’s my quick thoughts on “Automaton“, I think it’s a really cool song which will grow on me and I will bleed the hell out of for weeks to come. And while I can see old school fans of the acid jazz days of the first 3 albums not being too captivated by this material, I think that this is a sign of good things to come. Anyway, for you Jamiroquai fans what did you think of this new song? Drop me your thoughts in the comments below so I’ll see ya on the next blog post, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2017 in Media, Music, Reviews

 

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Favourite Songs #21: Jamiroquai – Radio

Howdy people of the interweb, and welcome to the twentieth edition of my series of blog posts dedicated to some of my favourite songs ever in life. Today I’m going to be returning to Jamiroquai with another one of my favourite songs in existence, and the song in question is “Radio“.

Since “Radio” was never officially released I can only show you the album art from, High Times: Singles 1992–2006, the greatest hits album where the song originated from.

Honestly this is one of those songs you hear and instantly fall in love with, I have been listening to this songs since the summer of 2006 and it has never stopped. Even though it’s not a released single, this is one of my favourite Jamiroquai tunes because of it’s godly, sexy and addictive nature!

Just have a listen to this song of awesomeness below:

Oh good gravy, this is my jam. I love this song. Straight from the time the song begins, you’re sent into a world of ecstasy  I love Jay Kay’s opening vocals along with the melodic guitar and then the song drops and heavier guitar sounds, but it is the chorus that really sets my soul on fire. The vocals, the melody and the back vocalists, it all works together to create a thing of beauty. I think I love this song more because I know it’s about sex, it’s like the lyrics are a metaphoric disguise for the actions of sex and I think it works really well.

As I said before I’ve been listening to this song since 2006, back then I was 16 and my love for Jamiroquai was sky-high! And after I heard this song as the last track on High Times: Singles 1992–2006 I was completely hooked. This was the song that was to guaranteed to put me in a good mood regardless of what situation I was in. The song just sounded so sexy and it just got me in the mood to dance and sing along, honestly there weren’t many songs I was addicted to in the same way like “Radio“. However like all good material it does get old after a while if you overdo it and man I sucked all the juice out of it for a while during the last two years. However since 2012 I think my love for the song has increased and now I feel like it is a song I couldn’t live without again. But I guess that’s just the addictive power of Jamiroquai then haha. 😀

So to conclude “Radio” by Jamiroquai is one of the sexiest and most addictive tunes ever. It is hard to describe what makes this song work so well, but when you hear it, you feel the music pass through you right to your soul and it fills you with good vibes. This is honestly one of Jamiroquai’s most underrated songs ever and more people need to know about it, so I’m spreading the love. I really encourage you to have a listen, it’s THAT good! 🙂

Well that’s another song review done, what do you think of this sexy Jamiroquai tune? Whatever your thoughts are leave me a comment below and be sure to come back next time for another song review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on July 22, 2013 in Media, Music, Reviews

 

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My Memories From Magic Summer Live 2013

Howdy ladies and gents of the north, south, east and west. Today I’m gonna be talking about arguably the best Saturday I have experienced in recent memory. On Saturday July 13th I embarked on a trip to Stoke Park in Guildford to attend the Magic Summer Live festival, while all of the musicians on the main stage had something special to show off, I was mainly going because I was FINALLY going to see Jamiroquai live for the first time! So I was proper excited. So now it’s obviously Monday and I still say that I haven’t gotten over what I saw… Ladies and gents this was quite simply the best day of my life for AGES!

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So now I’m going to talk about the different people I saw so be prepared!

Soul II Soul

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Unfortunately due to me being late on the train I only caught the last few minutes of this act, but they sounded great. I got to hear their classic single “Back to Life (However Do You Want Me)” and it was beautiful, Caron Wheeler’s voice was still wonderful and very similar to how she sounds on the original track so that was a plus.

Beverly Knight

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Alrighty then, from here this is where my day started to get interesting. Now I don’t have anything against Beverly Knight, she is a great singer, but not of her more recent material has been as memorable or as catchy as her earlier work. So with that in mind I was expecting something decent, but her act on-stage was nothing short of incredible and I really was impressed. When she was introduced she walked onto the stage singing in a high-pitched and soulful fashion, it was a very dramatic entrance. Then from there she sang a few of her old songs along with a few covers too. I loved how in between songs she talked to the audience in a very laid back and London-like fashion, it was funny. My personal highlights was when she incorporated Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” lyrics into one of her songs and when she did a great cover of the Brave New Heavies’ song “Apparently Nothing“.

Nile Rodgers featuring Chic

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Now honestly before Jamiroquai came on this was the highlight of the day. Nile Rodgers and Chic were nothing short of astonishing. Trying to describe their set would be like trying to describe why food is so addictive to a fat person. You can’t explain it, but when you have it, IT’S SO DAMN GOOD! I knew that Nile Rodgers was a great guitarist but I never knew that his skills were so badass. Also along with Chic it made for one of the most impressive live acts I have seen in my life. They performed several of their hits including “Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)”, “Everybody Dance”, “La Freak”, “I Want Your Love” and “Good Times“. And then they even included some of Nile Rodgers’ other singles through his guitar work by other artists like Sister Sledge’s “We Are Family“, Diana Ross’ “Upside Down” and my personal favourite David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance“. Honestly it was the best thing ever, there was so much power, style and a good groove in the air that you couldn’t help but fall in love. Everything about it was perfect and besides Rodgers, the bassist Jerry Barnes was such a beast! His playing skills were incredible and I think he was doing a bit of slap bass and it was beautiful!

Ocean Colour Scene

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Now this band is one I am familiar with from the 90s but never been an avid fan or known too many of their song, but I decided to stick around and have a listen. I actually really liked their material, they came on and started their set with a song I hadn’t heard in years “The Riverboat Song“, it was intense and sounded amazing. After that the group played a few new songs and more classics of which I wasn’t aware of. But at the end they played the song I had waited for, “The Day We Caught The Train“, that is a song I’ve known since I was like 6 or 7 years old and the only Ocean Colour Scene song I know very well, so I enjoyed that a lot.

Joss Stone

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Knowing that there was only this act standing between me and Jamiroquai was hard, but I decided, hell I’m gonna be good at check out Joss Stone first. Now I can’t say I’ve ever been a fan of hers, not to say that she’s a bad singer, far from it. It’s just that her music is just my cup of tea. But I have to say her performance was pretty damn impressive, the songs she did were a set of her own singles with some covers too and I really liked her vocals along with the cool musicians accompanying her.

Jamiroquai

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Now it’s time to talk about the big one, the band I’d waited all day to see, Jamiroquai. The anticipation after seeing Joss Stone was incredibly high and I couldn’t stand the wait, but then, without any introduction, members of the band just started coming onto the stage and playing a song and next thing you know Jay Kay jumps out and starts the tune. HOLY CHRIST IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL INTRODUCTION! There were so many singles from Jamiroquai’s discography that were played that night, most of them were old classics like “High Times”, “Alright”, “When You Gonna Learn?” and “Canned Heat” to name a few. But it was the way in which they were done which was special, all the songs had new arrangements and some even transitioned from one to the next and it all sounded so gorgeous and I was stand right at the front of the stage singing me heart out and dancing away. It was the best thing ever. The highlight songs were “Travelling Without Moving“, “Runaway” and “White Knuckle Ride” for sure.

In conclusion Magic Summer Live was one of the best events I have ever attended in my life. I haven’t felt so much happiness and satisfaction since the first or second time I went to the London MCM Expo back in 2008/9. While I think it would have been better I had someone to share the magic with, honestly I still had a great time on my own. The music acts were incredible and will stay with me for a lifetime so yeah I can’t complain at all. I just wanna live it all over again. 😀

Okay so that was my review of Magic Summer Live 2013 hope you enjoyed it. Also if you attended the festival too I’d love to hear your thoughts on it too, just drop them in the comments below. Alrighty then I’m off, peace out people! 😀

 
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Posted by on July 15, 2013 in Life, Media, Music, Reviews

 

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Favourite Songs #20: Jamiroquai – Seven Days In Sunny June

Howdy people of the interweb, and welcome to the twentieth edition of my series of blog posts dedicated to some of my favourite songs ever in life. Today I’m going to be talking about one of the most beautiful songs I’ll ever know in this life or the next. It’s time to talk about “Seven Days In Sunny June” by Jamiroquai.

Now it’s time to dive into one those nostalgic tunes that that never leave your mind. This Jamiroquai song has been one of my favourite songs since I was 15 years old in 2005 and  is one of those summer jams that are never far from your mind no matter what time of the year, but when the summer starts up again you really wanna hear it again.

Check out have a listen to this beautiful song below:

If this song was good enough already you have this awesome music video that makes it all the better.

How good is that song? What makes this song so great is something that is beyond words. It’s Jamiroquai so it’s automatically perfection. No but seriously this song does have a beauty to it that’s undeniable. I love the way it sounds, musically and vocally its a melodic tune that’s soft and groovy. One of the key things about the sound I’ve always liked is the lyrics, the story that Jay Kay tells through his singing is one that is that I can totally relate to. This was one of the main song’s off of Jamiroquai’s Dynamite album that I fell in love with almost instantly, it had a wonderful sound, straight from the point it begins with that great guitar and the piano, everything else just falls into place after that. Honestly this song made my summer of 2005 and after that I couldn’t stop.

Seven Days In Sunny June” is from this album and it is arguably my favourite Jamiroquai album. Even though its nostalgic property now since it’s like 8 years old, but I still love it.

In truth I don’t listen to the song as much these days because I bled it dry through my teenage years, however since coming to uni it has resurfaced. And in 2013 I think I have a newfound respect for this song, after a complicated situation with one of my friends took place this year I relate to this song even more than before. While I wasn’t friends with this girl for years, it was for a considerable time and she knew I had the hots for her and yet I got told we were just friends, just like the lyrics in the song! I understand now.

So to conclude “Seven Days In Sunny June” by Jamiroquai is one of the songs that I feel everyone should listen to. It is the perfect mellow jam for the summertime and it’s such a feel-good tune yo. What can I say I am in love and since I’m actually going to see Jamiroquai live TOMORROW I thought it’d be appropriate to review this song today. So yeah go out and listen to this song, it is worth your time!

Well that’s another song review done, what do you think of this beautiful Jamiroquai tune? Whatever your thoughts are leave me a comment below and be sure to come back next time for another song review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on July 12, 2013 in Media, Music, Reviews

 

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Favourite Songs #2: Jamiroquai – Feels Just Like It Should

Howdy people of the interweb, and welcome to the second edition of my series of blog posts dedicated to some of my favourite songs ever in life. And today’s song is one of my favourite tunes from the year 2005 and the song is “Feels Just Like It Should” by my favourite band ever, Jamiroquai.

Now as you may or may not be aware of Jamiroquai are my all-time favourite band ever and I think their music is totally badass! I own every album and know all of their songs and I’ve been listening to their awesome sound since my childhood many moons ago. I can’t recall whether I found Jamiroquai through TV and radio or whether it was my mum who introduced me to them. Either way their music in the acid jazz genre has always been brilliant and back in my school days I liked every single the released… Until 2005 when “Feels Just Like It Should” came out. When I first heard this song debut on the radio I hated it, it didn’t sound like that classic acid jazz style from the 90s or the disco/funk style of their last album, I just wanted nothing to do with the band. However some time later down the line I started to embrace the song and by the time I got Jamiroquai’s Dynamite album I was obsessed with the tune.

There’s something so sexy and funky about “Feels Just Like It Should” that’s indescribable. The introduction of this song with the distorted beatboxing sounded so badass to me and then the way the song just builds from there just makes my ears melt. The electronic sound of the song which I initially hated became one of my favourite aspects about the song and listening to the song on full blast is so good! In my mid teens until I was around 19 I loved this song. In the last 2 I’d drifted away from this song because of Jamiroquai’s Rock Dust Light Star album, however these days I’m playing a lot more and don’t know why I stopped listening in the first place lol.

So to conclude, “Feels Just Like It Should” by Jamiroquai is still one of my favourite songs in existence and since coming to Sheffield I’ve rediscovered my love for this specific Jamiroquai tune. I highly recommend this song it’s totally awesome and will fill your ears with happiness yo 😀

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2012 in Media, Music, Reviews

 

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