The Aggrolites

IV

Written by: PP on 22/09/2009 00:09:22

Perhaps you've heard of the name The Aggrolites before, perhaps you haven't, but I for one have noticed a huge amount of hype surrounding the band, with many referring to them as the 'saviors of ska music', so naturally their new album is a perfect touch down point for checking out what everyone else seems to be talking about. Maybe the hype is a result of lots of extensive drinking sessions followed by weary mornings, because if there ever existed perfect music for nursing a hangover, then the relaxed, feel good ska/reggae rock of The Aggrolites would be it. Just to be clear, I'm not actually hangover on a late Monday evening, it's just something I jotted down when I started writing this review on early Saturday afternoon.

Bands like The Capital Beat, The Slackers, some slower songs Reel Big Fish come to mind when listening to "IV". Especially the first mentioned sounds nearly identical to The Aggrolites, so if you know them, that's a good reference point for you. You'll find lots of funk, ska, and reggae mixed together in a number of different ways, occasionally showing glimpses of Motown and the 60s as well, all delivered at a speed second to a snail. It certainly doesn't sound like The Aggrolites are in the hurry to go anywhere at all at any point during the record. This wouldn't be such a massive problem if the record was shorter, but at 21 tracks and 75 minutes, you'll be yawning far before you'll even reach the mid point. It also lacks enough good songs to keep you interested for the whole way. "What A Complex" is good because it resembles Sublime thanks to some funky keyboards and curvy rhythms, "Feelin' Alright" is perfect for closing your eyes and imagining yourself at a beautiful white-sand beach at Hawaii, "Reggae Summertime" sounds like it could originate directly from Jamaica, and generally the songs contain lots and lots of soul, leading to a convincing sound in places.

But in between the highlights there's more filler than on the latest Linkin Park album, which ultimately is the biggest stumbling stone for this record and the reason why it has only received average ratings. So to return to my original point, "IV" is good music to have on the background when you're in the need of some light music to create a chilled out atmosphere, but for serious listening, it just doesn't have enough meat around the bones to fill your stomach.

6

Download: What A Complex, Reggae Summertime, Feelin' Alright
For the fans of: The Capital Beat, The Slackers, Sublime, Ramjet, Reel Big Fish
Listen: Myspace

Release date 02.06.2009
Hellcat Records

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