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Bob Sinclair - Western Dream

Bob Sinclair, Western Dream

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3 out of 5

HOUSE superstar Bob Sinclar may specialise in cheesy dance tracks that rely all too heavily on infectiously rapid acoustic guitar licks and nagging whistle hooks – but there is, just occasionally, something of a guilty pleasure to be found in them.

Spearheaded by the UK top 15 hit single, Love Generation, featuring the vocals of ex-Wailer Gary Nesta Pine, the album is a mostly vibrant mix of radio-friendly dance tracks that contain an easy accessibility whilst attempting to draw on a variety of global styles.

Recent single, World, Hold On (Children Of the Sky is actually one of the weaker efforts on the album, given the way it lazily adopts the same formula for success as Love Generation – this time featuring the soulful vocals of Steve Edwards (who has previously worked with Basement Jaxx, Moloko, Xpress2 and Cassius). That means to say, there’s another nagging whistle hook atop plenty of synths and drums, as well as enough pop sensibilities to guarantee another high chart placing.

Elsewhere, however, the album shows a little more diversity and occasionally gets it right. The Wild West focused Tennessee drops some undeniably toe-tapping beats and some smart slide guitar samples that only become undermined by the gruff vocals.

While In The Name Of Love has a genuinely sunshine vibe that’s augmented by the breezy licks of guitar, some Marley-esque vocals and a sweeping backing chorus that’s all about putting smiles on faces. It works – just – but it’s the sort of track you might find yourself dancing along to at the end of a hot summer evening, while drawing on traces of African music.

The sexy, Latin-fuelled Amor, Amor features an extremely sassy hispanic set of vocals that elevates an otherwise bland, unrelenting beat to something quite dance-worthy, whilst simultaneously evoking memories of the spirit of Brazil.

Such moments provide a welcome respite from the less ambitious efforts, such as the punk and electro clash of For You, a tedious headache inducer with a bad set of vocals, and the supposedly funky Everybody Movin’ – another of several big misfires which attempts to freshen things up with the occasional burst of gospel. The beats simply aren’t up to much.

The album is book-ended by two versions of Love Generation, just to milk the track for everything that it’s worth and ends things on a repetitive note that further undoes some of the album’s better work.

A mixed package then. One that I hadn’t really counted on liking at all but which contained the odd pleasant surprise. It’ll be as massive on the mainstream dance scene as many of Bob’s singles but, for once, you don’t mind as much. This isn’t all bad without being really that great.

Track listing:

  1. Love Generation
  2. World, Hold On (Children Of The Sky
  3. Tennessee
  4. In The Name Of Love
  5. Miss Me
  6. Sing My Song
  7. Rock This Party (Everybody Dance Now)
  8. For You
  9. Everybody Movin’
  10. Amora, Amor
  11. Shining From Heaven
  12. Give A Lil’ Love
  13. Love Generation [Ron Carroll Remix]