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Morcheeba - The Antidote


Review: Jack Foley

THE name may be the same, but the personnel have changed.

Morcheeba are no longer fronted by the sultry vocals of Skye Edwards, but rather the grittier tones of former Noonday Underground vocalist, Daisy Martey.

And they have also employed the services of renowned experimental musician, Rob Mullinder, to flex their muscles ever more creatively.

The ensuing album is called The Antidote and it's fair to say that it provides a near-perfect remedy to the most stressed out of days.

Opening with the lead single, Wonders Never Cease, which contains plenty of catchy hooks and a truly Summery vibe, the album proceeds to deliver a collection of genuinely feel-good tracks.

Anyone fearing that Edwards' absence may be detrimental had better think again, for while the singer was undoubtedly an integral part of the Morcheeba success story, Martey wisely doesn't stray too far from the tried and tested formula for success.

Hence, there may be certain listeners who don't even realise that the singer has changed.

Wonders Never Cease, especially, feels like a throwback to the Big Calm era, while the funky Everybody Loves A Loser contains a retro vibe that owes itself to the Shirley Bassey/James Bond era.

It's a wonderfully sassy affair that contains some nice orchestral undertones, as well as the usual mix of intoxicating beats and straight-forward soul.

The grittier edge to Martey's vocals translates well to the slower numbers, too, with Living Hell providing a nice workout for them, complete with a Motown-inspired chorus that features a gospel-style backing.

While the breezy Lighten Up shows that Morcheeba have lost none of their ability to wrap uplifting melodies around warm beats, complete with some nice horns.

As a whole, The Antidote shows that when it comes to merging hip-hop, blues, country and soul, there are few people better.

It's an effortlessly pleasing affair that ought to continue the Morcheeba success story without too many ill effects from shedding key personnel.

Track listing:
1. Wonders Never Cease
2. Ten Men
3. Everybody Loves A Loser
4. Like A Military Coup
5. Living Hell
6. People Carrier
7. Lighten Up
8. Daylight Robbery
9. Antidote
10. God Bless And Goodbye

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