KAVA KAVA Supalube (Delerium)

This, the latest (debut? More informative press releases please!) album from the five-piece collective Kava Kava, actually snuck out in November to scandalously minimal press interest: they play a kind of jazz/soul/reggae/dance fusion, a bit like a noisier Finlay Quaye, or something in the same arena as Jamiroquai or Stereo MCs. Whilst the music of the last two named hurts my ears, I’m pleased to report that Kava Kava are actually rather impressive. Consider this: "Supalube" opens with a loose-limbed, loop-driven cover of Hendrix’s "Freedom", which, amazingly, doesn’t make their own material look flimsy and insubstantial in comparison. (Are you listening, State Of Grace?).

Vocalist Fulgoni gets away with rhyming ‘intrinsically’ with ‘eulogies’ and ‘inconsistencies’ over a wacka-wacka blaxploitation soundtrack in "Feek", before conjuring up eight minutes of analogue synth- and metal guitar-drenched paranoia in "Trepanner". "Mr. Benson", a tirade against tobacco firms, of all things, shows they were paying attention whilst touring the UK with the mighty Gill Scott-Heron. Going from funky to futuristic in the space of one song, Kava Kava operate in a world where loops and samples can be just as expressive as, and live happily alongside, rhythm and horn sections, and a very pleasant place it seems to be too.