Calvin Harris, the man born Adam Wiles in Dumfries in the mid-80s, is the very definition of a self-made star. Proving the power of plenty of gym time and Sun-In, he’s morphed from floppy haired indie-disco dude into buff superstar DJ and EDM icon without looking back. His latest trick sees him surrounding himself with some of the world’s biggest – and hippest – singers and rappers to produce the certified sound of summer 2017.
‘Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1’ is a triumph; a good-time album of wall-to-wall hits with a carefree, funky tropical feel and more than enough cool points to see him embraced by the hipster crowd as well as holding on to the pop kids. Opener ‘Slide’, featuring the mighty Frank Ocean and Migos, is a fresh-from-Miami-Beach banger, a modern yacht rocker with class, style and a supremely catchy hook.
The rest of the record is almost as good, with Young Thug, Pharrell Williams and Ariana Grande showing up for the Stevie- Wonder-at-the-club-styled ‘Heatstroke’. Katy Perry is on dreamy disco-funk anthem ‘Feels’, Snoop Dogg is on the G-Funk flavoured ‘Holiday’, and Future and Khalid are on the heady, party-starting ‘Rollin’’. One of the finest lyrics of the year also makes itself known on ‘Faking It’, as Lil Yachty states: “Do you remember that time I put pepperoni on your face and made you a creature / Now I think about your face every time I eat pizza.” A bit silly but impossible not to love; kind of like Calvin Harris, really.