Jungle - Loving Stereo Music Review
I can’t believe they released a commercial soundtrack as a studio album.
Over the past few years, I’ve found myself more and more invested in dance music. Not even specifically dance, really anything that I can groove to. Daft Punk, The Avalanches, all the way to Al Green and Stevie Wonder. Most recently, the new Yola album as well. When I heard there was another modern disco album on the way, I immediately added it to my list. Maybe I shouldn’t have been so eager, though.
It actually starts off pretty well, with a string focused intro track that reminded me of Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories with how it blended together lots of instrumentation, notably those strings. My high hopes carried into the first proper track, “Keep Moving”, and it delivered. The song pretty much nails all the essentials for the genre: A tight bassline, drums that stay in their lane, a great progression on strings, and a catchy falsetto hook. There’s always room for the track to breathe and let the silence carry the beat. The only problem with this, is that it’s probably the best song on the album.
“All Of The Time” is alright, pretty much a poppier version of the first track, and “Romeo” is actually another highlight. The main beat is composed of a few spliced up samples with some absolutely fat drums and bass that just cut through the mix like it’s a slice of cake. It’s great. However, the album starts to lose the energy it had only four tracks in. From “Lifting You” onward, with maybe the exception of “Truth”, it sounds like it was produced specifically to get commercial play. The falsetto vocals are no longer supported by a thick rhythm section, now only having drums that sound like boring GarageBand presets. The bass is serviceable, but still gets dragged down by the bland and generic percussion. The worst offender might just be “Talk About It” since it uses an amen break with a shaker in combination with everything else, which really just makes me feel like I’m trying to skip an annoying car ad on YouTube since I forgot to turn on my adblock.
I really struggled to get through this one. Most of this sounds like they just tried to rewrite the same generic song to better their chances of it getting used for something. Just add “Keep Moving” and “Romeo” to your playlist, then go back to Al Green’s Greatest Hits or Daft Punk’s Discovery to clean your palette and instantly improve your day.