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Jamie Lidell - Jim

Jamie Lidell, Jim

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

JAMIE Lidell’s third album Jim seems to have arrived perfectly in time for the spring/summer season. It’s a ray of musical sunshine that makes no apology for its upbeat focus.

But unlike some of the more saccharine efforts from the likes of The Feeling, it retains a keen sense of nostalgia, a sharp sense of style and mixes influences to generally pleasing effect. By the singer’s own admission, it’s a promiscuously diverse collection that mixes up gospel grooves, sweetly sung soul, delicate balladry, thumping early R&B, synthed up disco and even a little ‘hillbilly funk’.

Tracks like Out Of My System have an immediately pleasing Motown quality about them that’s delivered with genuine relish by Lidell, but they come in stark contrast to more intimate numbers such as passionate final track Rope of Sand. Such diversity helps to keep the listener on their toes.

There’s a touch of the Otis Redding about the brooding All I Wanna Do, another of the choice cuts, while Little Bit Of Feel Good is a funky offering that’s shot through with some smart stabs of brass and flute, and a really dancefloor friendly vibe.

Just occasionally, the odd track fails to work, with Figured Me Out emerging as the sort of indifferent track that Jamiroquai might put out, while Hurricane is a frenzied disco stomp that could even have come from Gnarls Barkley’s copy book.

But such moments are in short supply and even continue to show the album’s diversity, with no two tracks ever sounding the same. Green Light is a smooth, ’70s influenced disco swinger, while Where D’You Go drops an inspired central piano chord and some infectious handclap beats to deliver another feelgood party favourite.

Lidell, for his part, makes no apology for displaying his influences so blatantly, preferring instead to celebrate his musical passions out loud and invite everyone to join in. It’s an invitation you should take at the earliest opportunity.

Download picks: Out Of My System, All I Wanna Do, Little Bit Of Feelgood, Where D’You Go, Rope Of Sand

Track listing:

  1. Another Day
  2. Wait For Me
  3. Out Of My System
  4. All I Wanna Do
  5. Little Bit Of Feel Good
  6. Figured Me Out
  7. Hurricane
  8. Green Light
  9. Where D’You Go
  10. Rope Of Sand