Glo­be­trot­ting mu­si­cal poly­math’s first al­bum in seven years.

Mojo (UK) - - Filter Albums -

DJ, pro­ducer and man-about­town James Lavelle is un­doubt­edly one of the best­con­nected peo­ple in mu­sic, hav­ing worked with Ian Brown, Mas­sive At­tack and Queens Of The Stone Age, among many oth­ers, since his UNKLE project first ap­peared in the mid-’90s. The guest list isn’t too shabby on this fifth ef­fort ei­ther, with Mark Lane­gan, The Duke Spirit’s Liela Moss and Mer­cury nom­i­nee Eska among those on board. The Road Part 1 is de­scribed by Lavelle him­self as hav­ing “a foot in mod­ern Lon­don” – a link that is at best ten­u­ous. As a melt­ing pot of dis­parate ideas, how­ever, it’s fre­quently gor­geous. It swings wildly but adroitly from darkly cine­matic spir­i­tu­als (Farewell; Stole Enough) to hyp­notic down­tempo trance (Sun­rise Al­ways Come Around) and glitchy gospel (Cow­boys Or In­di­ans). And bar the sole mis­step (the sludgy dirge of Nowhere To Run/Ban­dits), this al­bum proves that af­ter 20-plus years in the game, Lavelle the Re­nais­sance man still has plenty to of­fer. Matt Yates

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