May 25 2010
Seriously folks, this one may be my favorite of the entire year. While I rarely use that category, I have been listening to the latest project from The Space Invadas, Soul:Fi, an awful lot; in the car, at home, on long bike rides and yes, I'm grooving to it even now.
Space Invadas are a collaboration between Sydney-based artist Katalyst and singer Steve Spacek (whose song "Dollar" is already on our playlist btw). Katalyst's cutting edge beatsmithing has earned him a name on the Sydney scene's vanguard while Spacek is the definition of a modern soul singer. Spacek in particular has been killing it, having worked with J Dilla, Mos Def, Q-Tip, Slum Village and Common. He's got that Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye thing going on and has been championed by everyone from Entertainment Weekly to Mos Def. For good reason, his voice is superb and can find range within the whole soul music idiom and take the sound beyond its conventions.
Soul:Fi, the album that the pair produced together, has a lot to love on its eleven full songs. Funky, old-school grooves with sweet voiced contributions from Jade McRae and Fantine on "Life" and "Super Sweet." Digital space funk thumpiness on "Rise"(which won Tarik's Are You Feeling This? last week) and "See Em Hear Em." Trance-like funk-mantra mysticism on the lovely "So Strong," and a 'Quiet Storm' of sexual steaminess on "Give Me The Love." Beat driven soul sounds nice with Spacek crooning on a gems like "Imaginist" and "Closer." They even get in a bit of electro edginess on "Recognise." Afrobeat finds flavor in the heat of "Done It Again" while "Originality," the album's first single is a cut with broad appeal.
Rarely do I take the time to listen listen to an album, rarely do I ever review an entire album, rarely is the effort even worth it-- this album however, is definitely worth it. I personally like every song here and I think you might as well. Don't believe me? Checkit out yourself...
...if you like it, pick up their free Follow The Signs mixtape