Space Monkeys vs Gorillaz : Laika Come Home

Cartoon supergroup and Brit-hop champion immersed, pretty successfully, in dub

Going by the dub scientist’s rule of thumb that less is more, ‘Laika Come Home’ is that most exciting prospect – a Damon Albarn album, with all the Damon Albarn taken off it, but if his voice is seldom heard, the man is undoubtedly still present in its grooves. Over a pretty trad dub framework, the album is rife with excellent brass arrangements (particularly on the single ‘M1/A1’) that pay homage to The Specials and 2-Tone, and to Dexy‘s, essentially to the powerful multicultural guitar music of Albarn’s youth. If you hadn’t guessed that Terry Hall is on it, well, Terry Hall’s on it.

John Robinson