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Dan Baker

CD of The Week

Week of 8/16/21

    Jungle - Loving In Stereo (AWAL)

    If you’re craving good old-fashioned feel-good music, look no further. UK indie dance pop duo Josh Lloyd-Watson and Tom McFarland, aka Jungle, have just launched their third album into the stratosphere. Entitled Living In Stereo, this collection of neo-soul, funk, and disco inspired jams is prime for the discotheque and late summer parties. Lush production and positive vibes abound on these 13 fresh tracks which were recorded pre-pandemic and then finely tuned over the last year and a half.

    At the first needle drop, we get orchestral sways and lovely choirs on first cuts “Dry Your Tears” and “Keep Moving.” Likewise, closer “Can’t Stop The Stars” brings the album full circle, imbued with joyful beats and swirling strings. A double set of tunes in the middle of the album (“Fire” and “Talk About It’) reveal a subtle influence of the 90’s Madchester sound; the drums and bass lines lifted right out of bangers like “Fool’s Gold” by The Stone Roses. “Bonnie Hill” finishes with some jazzy flute and squonky sax, while the bare bones “What D’You Know About Me?” drives a funky beat right through your skull.

    Jungle delves into some collaborations here that ultimately work as stand-alones but feel a little out of place in this collection. “Romeo” features rapper Bas and slows down the groove, while “Goodbye My Love” employs Tamil-Swiss vocalist Priya Ragu for a lilting R&B number that oozes with sexiness. 

    Loving In Stereo ironically comes at the right time, when a grieving world needs positivity the most. Songs like “Just Fly, Don’t Worry” and “Truth” remind us that oftentimes music is the ultimate escape from world sorrow. Jungle gives us what we need to just dance, love, and be free.

    Jungle lands in Philly at The Fillmore on Tuesday, October 5th.
    Review by Dave Lindquist

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