MF Robots: Break the Wall (BBE, 2021)

October 28, 2021 at 7:19 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

MF Robots: Break the Wall

Jan Kincaid, founder of British acid jazz mainstays Brand New Heavies, and vocalist Dawn Joseph (formerly of BNH) are the driving forces behind MF Robots. The vibrant funk/soul group’s second album is all about bringing people together through the spirit and joy of music, despite all the craziness going on in the world. There’s always going to be layers upon layers of conflict and chaos and tragedy and injustice, and there’s times when it’s necessary to stand up and resist, but there’s also time to celebrate life and remind ourselves why we’re here and what all this is worth persisting for. To that end, the band play their hearts out and sing nothing but uplifting lyrics. The intro catches the band in the middle of a heavy jam session, and there’s a spontaneous energy to their playing on some of the tracks, but they also focus on more polished, radio-friendly sounds, like the disco-pop jam “Crazy Life” and the ’80s boogie R&B of “Good People”. Albums like this can seem a bit too eager to please sometimes, and at almost 70 minutes, there’s a few tracks that can safely be skipped, like “Brand New Day”, which is bubbly and cheerful but a bit cloying. Taken a few songs at a time, though, the band’s music is an effective pick-me-up that goes down easily.

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