Album Review

Join The Dots

Join The Dots

by The Next Men

Sanctuary Records
6 / 10
7th December 2009

Reviewed by Lukas Clark-Memler

The Nextmen’s fourth studio album is aptly titled. From light to dark, mild to wild, funk to reggae, hip-hop to dance - all the tracks on the record are connected in a Join the Dots fashion. This is not to say that the album is choppy or rough in any way. On the contrary, Join the Dots possesses a unique fluidity; a subtle manoeuvring through a range of genres, that makes this record stand out from the hordes of the generic and unremarkable.

This album features an extremely impressive and capable group of collaborators. From the soulful musings of Ms. Dynamite, to the coy and youthful vocals of Betty Steele, The Nextmen have selected a group that herald diversity and eclecticism. Join The Dots is a perfect chill-out album; but definitely refrain from only poolside listening, because come nightfall, these relaxing songs quickly progress into throbbing and vibrant club tracks.

But perhaps the most notable feature of this album is its strong and seamless production. Both members of The Nextmen have had considerable experience in producing and remixing songs prior to the band’s formation, so this competency in production technique is extremely apparent.

The album’s eponymous track is the highlight of the whole record. Quite frankly, it’s obvious why the boys decided to name the album after this song – it’s really good and by far the standout track. With soaring violins, an addictive bass line and unique instrumentation, “Join the Dots” captures The Nextmen at their best; smooth, confident and ready to party.

Boasting strong reggae, and jazz influences, Join the Dots is both a chilled out, tranquil endeavour, as well as a pumped up, party starter. Both at home by the pool and in the club, Join the Dots should please all.

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