It’s 16 years since the Avalanches’ era-defining ‘Since I Left You’. How can a follow-up that took so long sound so meh?
Fragments Of Freedom
[I]Et voila[/I] -[a]M-People[/a] for cool cats.
, purrs Skye on 'Love Sweet Love'. "We love the sunshine to dance by the pool". This album shows they've finally sussed what they want - a cool pair of shades and a seat in the sun. As they pat their steel drums on 'A Well Deserved Break' and give Biz Markie the lead vocals for 'In The Hands Of The Gods', a sense of serene calm has replaced the twitching scowls of old.
They toy with Stevie Wonder's keyboard sound from 'Superstition', mimic Grandmaster Flash on occasion and do their best to make the bits that sound like Beck seem accidental, and while it's a record that blankly refuses to maintain eye contact as it cheerfully accosts you, 'Fragments...' is an enduring monument to quiet goodness.
Having a nice time, they wish you were here. Sometimes that's enough.
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