Hardkandy - Last To Leave

Last To Leave slides in on the stunning Dizzy Dumb. With soulful vocals (courtesy of one Sean Clarke), delicate orchestral backing and laidback beats, it could easily be mistaken for Massive Attack at their most serene. As an opener, this is something of a double-edged sword; it may make the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end, but little of what follows can match. That said, penultimate track Jack of Clubs, a real smoochy late night number, again sung by Clarke, comes very close, and goes some way towards balancing the two ends of the album.

Various vocalists have been drafted in for this, the Brighton-formed band's second long-player. Downtempo single Advice features 60s/70s folk-jazz-soul man Terry Callier, who, incidentally, also appears on forthcoming Massive Attack track Live With Me. However, it's not all mood harking back to the golden days of trip-hop. Three Days and State Of You, for example, show a looser, funkier side to the band. Horns are scattered liberally over the former, and a couple of other tunes here.

Last To Leave is one of those strange albums where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. Perhaps the songs are too subtle individually. This reviewer hadn't been overly impressed by the singles, yet heard in one piece it holds together nicely and (judging by the amount of radio exposure thus far) is destined to become something of an overlooked gem.

Overall

7

out of 10

Last updated: 19/04/2018 06:18:52

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