Spin Doc­tor and the lat­est al­bum reviews

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Contents -

Mike Steva

Yoruba Records MEL­BOURNE house pro­ducer Mike Steva’s de­but LP re­flects a ma­tu­rity and rich­ness in pro­duc­tion that makes it per­fect fare for the worldly Yoruba im­print. Blend­ing in­flu­ences from Steva’s Mace­do­nian back­ground with ad­ven­tur­ous in­stru­men­ta­tion, tribal rhythms, soul­ful vo­cals and in­ter­mit­tent mood­i­ness, Who Am I’s con­ve­nient sum­ma­tion as a house record dis­re­gards Steva’s tal­ent for strik­ing such a nice bal­ance be­tween warm vo­cal tunes and darker, more driv­ing grooves. Who Am I is also pep­pered with con­tri­bu­tions from sev­eral Mel­bourne mu­si­cians and artists, start­ing with the ti­tle-track opener, which brings to­gether the spo­ken-word vo­cal of poet Bianca Maya Foul­ton with off-kil­ter drums, squelchy synths and an un­nerv­ing back­ground ef­fect. Mo­ment in Time is a bril­liantly mel­low, lounge-like of­fer­ing el­e­vated through the pipes of Berlin-based singer George Levin. The tight ReS­o­lu­tion fea­tur­ing Yoruba head Osun­lade evokes mem­o­ries of clas­sics from Soul Heaven and Vega Records. Sunce, trans­lated to “sun­shine”, brings the happy vibes in what is an in­stru­men­tal track un­der­pinned by punchy horns, while Oa­sis demon­strates the va­ri­ety of in­stru­men­ta­tion fea­tured through­out the al­bum, as drums, per­cus­sion, keys, Rhodes and marimba com­bine to cre­ate a deep rhyth­mi­cal jour­ney.

Week­end Love is the al­bum’s feel-good stan­dard, per­me­ated by an un­ob­tru­sive beat that pro­motes the soul­ful back-and-forth be­tween Mel­bourne vo­cal­ists Motty & Siob­han. Steva’s steady rhythms and mix of vibes make Who Am I an idio­syn­cratic of­fer­ing, and one easy to sink into.

Spin Doc­tor is on leave.

Tim McNa­mara

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