#Review: Chromeo – Head Over Heels ūüφ


   

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Muzik Speaks Loves Atlantic Records - SmallerChromeo are an electro-funk duo from Canada, consisting of David “Dave 1” Macklovitch and Patrick “P-Thugg” Gemayel. To date, the pair have released four studio albums, but Head Over Heels marks their fifth album and debut release with our pals over at Atlantic Records.

Chromeo - Head Over Heels.jpg

The first I knew of Chromeo, was their remix of Maroon 5‘s ‘Wait’ (as featured on our re:MIXTAPE playlist), so I must be forgiven for not having heard much of their back catalogue. However, taking this album at face value, it is a strong release with a stunningly contemporary take on disco and funk music.

Having worked together for the past 15 years, it’s clear to see that these guys have perfected their sound, which is a perfect amalgamation of modern, electro-pop music with synth-driven disco and bass-slapping funk.

This is certainly an album that doesn’t take itself too seriously – it’s intentionally fun and funky, with its saucy innuendos and genre-perfect production qualities, the likes of Giorgio Moroder and Nile Rogers would be proud of.

The album kick-starts with the tantalising¬†‘Must’ve Been’¬†(featuring¬†DRAM) – a slap bass, groovy-guitar, vocoder-infused anthem, that excellently demonstrates what’s in store throughout the rest of the record.

With the music up and a house to yourself (…or packed with friends), there really will be no holding you back!

Other memorable moments include the wonderfully repetitive¬†‘Don’t Sleep’ (featuring French Montana¬†and¬†Stefflon Don)¬†with its laid-back 80s vibes and sensational vocal harmonies, whilst¬†‘One Track Mind’¬†is an understated yet seriously catchy track consisting of beautiful talk box, vocal melodies towards the end – it’s very similar to something you might hear by¬†Charlie Puth.

Meanwhile,¬†‘Bad Decision’¬†is all about splashing the cash on a girl and has a definite¬†Prince-esque vibe to it; high-pitched vocals on top of some superb little guitar riffs and¬†‘Right Back Home To You (Interlude)’¬†is a track you can get surprisingly hooked on – think funky soul meets jazz lounge, topped with sweeping high-pitched vocals; there’s a real 70s quality to it.

Towards the end of the album, it all comes together on the two-part, ‘Bedroom Calling’. Part One is a truly anthemic mellow jam with atmospheric, reverb-driven bass notes and slow drum beats, whilst Part Two¬†(featuring The-Dream) is a much more upbeat, pop tune that is oozing with shimmering synths.

To those who say quality disco music doesn’t get made any more, I would simply reply, “Chromeo”. This is definitely not an album you can listen to without, at the very least, bobbing your head and tapping you toe, but in reality, with the music up and a house to yourself (…or packed with friends), there really will be no holding you back!

Rating


‘Head Over Heels’¬†is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/head-over-heels/1380944674


Head Over Heels on Spotify

Must’ve Been featuring DRAM (Official Video)

Juice (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed this review! What do you think of this duo’s latest record? Does it fulfil all your funk needs or leave you wanting more? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media.


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#Review: Ben Howard – Noonday Dream


   

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Ben Howard is an English singer-songwriter and musician, most notable for winning the¬†Brit Award for¬†British Male Solo Artist at¬†the¬†2013 Brit Awards. Since then, his second album,¬†I Forget Where We Were, reached the Number 1 spot in the UK album charts. Now, with the buzz surrounding the release of his third album,¬†Noonday Dream, it could see him reach that same success. Here’s what we had to say about it…

Ben Howard - Noonday Dream.jpg

Ben Howard‘s latest album,¬†Noonday Dream, sees another change to his ever adapting sound, keeping this artist fresh and showing just how diverse he can be. Having seen 4 years pass since his previous album and now at the age of 31, Howard has proven that he won’t be bound to time constraints but instead, ensured he make the time to mature his songwriting and develop a new sound for his next record.

It all begins with the truly haunting and melancholic, ‘Nica Libres At Dusk’ ; a dark and reflective song at the start before emerging into bursts of peaceful reprieve and ecstatic, almost whale song, guitars. It certainly depicts imagery of an American desert, similar to that of the album artwork. Then during the last minute, it transforms into a dreamy, piano-led clearing; a beautiful transformation into a more euphoric sound of hope.

Other songs to take note of include; ‘Towing¬†The Line’¬†which is an almost Celtic-sounding, folk song with guitars that echo and seem to envelop you;¬†‘What The Moon Does’¬†which conjures up imagery of camping out under the stars of the Deep South in America;¬†‘Someone In The Doorway’,¬†a track that sounds almost like spoken verse, in places, but is probably one of the most upbeat songs on the album and somehow seems like it goes hand in hand with¬†‘The Defeat’; another similarly half-spoken, half-sung track that has a really rock edge to it.

Noonday Dream is an exquisitely atmospheric, richly textured and highly visual album that is sure to kick off the next chapter in Ben Howard’s career, with meteoric success.

The album was produced by Ben himself, alongside¬†long-time collaborator Mickey Smith, who between them, have done a superb job of capturing subtle nuances that make this such a stunning record. From the warm reverb of his acoustic guitars to the drawn out, whale-like sounds of his electric guitars (as on¬†‘Nica Libres At Dusk’) and the distinctive piano key strokes to subtle snippets of conversations (among many other captured sounds), this is a truly captivating record.

Noonday Dream is an exquisitely atmospheric, richly textured and highly visual album that is sure to kick off the next chapter in Ben Howard’s career, with meteoric success. Whilst it might not be to everyone’s specific tastes, any person who has an appreciation for skilful musicianship, poetic lyricism and stunning production, will find this to be a real gem of an album.

Rating
4


‘Noonday Dream’¬†is out 01/06/18 and can be downloaded from iTunes –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/noonday-dream/1364401352


Noonday Dream on Spotify

Nica Libres At Dusk (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of Ben Howard’s third album? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment below or via our social media.


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#WildCardWednesday: Ben Howard – ‘A Boat To An Island On The Wall’


   

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After 3 years away,¬†Ben Howard is back with ¬†his brand new single, ‘A Boat To An Island On The Wall’,¬†the first song to be taken from his upcoming, third studio album¬†Noonday Dream.

Having scored a Number 1 with his previous record, I Forget Where We Were, back in October 2014, Ben has clearly spent time crafting a song that is diverse from start to finish; it is a 7-minute epic that ascends from an eerie and unassuming start into a somewhat hauntingly grungy climax.

This song will surely affirm Ben Howard as one of the UK’s most unique and gifted artists and undoubtedly create excitement around his upcoming record release on 1st June 2018, on¬†Island Records.

No music video has been released as yet, but we’ll keep you updated if one emerges online.

What are your thoughts of this diverse singer-songwriter? Do you have a #WildCardWednesday track to share with us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or chat to us about it via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘A Boat To An Island On The Wall’¬†can be downloaded off¬†iTunes now –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/a-boat-to-an-island-on-the-wall/1364401352?i=1364401811


#Review: Will Joseph Cook – Sweet Dreamer


   

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Will Joseph Cook is a Kent-born singer songwriter who’s been hard at work crafting his sound, supporting on several tours and then in October 2016, embarked on a headline tour. Since then, we had a chat with him about what he’s been up to recently (check out the latest interview) and he’s put the finishing touches to his debut album. This is,¬†Sweet Dreamer.

Will Joseph Cook - Sweet Dreamer

The album kicks off with the chilled sing-along¬†track,¬†‘Biggest Fan’¬†with it’s slightly country-tinted guitar twangs, making for¬†the perfect way to open this rather cinematic record. It leads perfectly on to one of¬†Will‘s biggest hits,¬†‘Sweet Dreamer’;¬†a funky song with incredible production and subtle sounds, topped off with sugar-coated, sombre lyrics; an oxymoron to¬†the all-round uplifting sound of the track.

The record¬†flows incredibly through a whole heap of¬†diverse songs; from indie pop belters to almost club-like anthems, it’s packed with songs that just have to be danced and sung along to. The singer-songwriter also prides himself on his use of imagery to accompany his songs¬†(in the form of well-crafted music videos) but this album also takes you on a journey – each song is able to conjure up¬†images in the¬†mind that could well make for a video¬†– I’m sure that if he had the time, he’d could easily produce videos for each and every song, but that’s because each song on the album feels like it could be a single in its own right.

A forward-thinking, credible pop record, crammed full of diversity, for all the cool kids to revel in. A true modern masterpiece.

Stand-out tracks have to be ‘Treat Me Like A Lover’ and ‘Plastic’ – both have thumping beats that are guaranteed to have you coming back for more; particularly the latter.¬†‘Plastic’ is tinged with steel drum sounds and massively euphoric vocals that make me certain this huge banger will be a massive hit this summer. As well as some of his other singles,¬†‘Take Me Dancing’ and¬†‘Girls Like Me’, which are both awesome, another incredible song is¬†‘Alive’¬†– it feels like the song blends many genres and the falsetto vocals are truly captivating. Lastly, both¬†‘Hands’ and¬†‘Habit’ are very different songs to the rest of the album; especially¬†‘Hands’ – it’s a very raw, honest and truthful track that seems almost like a break from the rest of the album.

The production throughout the album is incredible – it comes together amazingly as a cohesive body of work – it’s genre-blending, exciting, playful and all-consuming (in a good way)!

It is undoubtable that this album will be the soundtrack to many people’s summers this year; it’s fun-filled, indie pop that is bursting at the seems with summery vibes, catchy choruses and intelligent lyrics.¬†A forward-thinking, credible pop record, crammed full of diversity, for all the cool kids to revel in. A true modern masterpiece. I can’t get enough of it, and you won’t be able to either.


Will is also off on a UK tour in May, in support of the album. He kicks off the tour at Stereo in Glasgow on 2nd May before travelling to Newcastle, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Cardiff, Bristol and London. He concludes the tour at The Bullingdon in Oxford on 12th May before heading to several places in Europe. Be sure to check out a date near you Рhe puts on an amazing show (Check out our review)!


Rating
5


‘Sweet Dreamer’¬†is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes –¬†https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/sweet-dreamer/id1203346564


Sweet Dreamer on Spotify

Beach (I Wanna Make You Mine) (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review of Will’s debut album. What are your thoughts of it? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or chat about it via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

Muzik Speaks Album Reviews


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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