Kele: Trick (Lilac/Kobalt Label Services) | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Thursday, October 17th, 2019  

Kele

Trick

Lilac/Kobalt Label Services

Oct 13, 2014 Issue #51 - September/October 2014 - alt-J Bookmark and Share


The Boxer, 2010's solo debut from Bloc Party's Kele Okereke, had all the hallmarks of a one-off, stop-gap release. With Okereke's full-time band becoming increasingly electronic with their third LP Intimacy, it seemed a time-lapsed outlet for the singer to exercise his creative whims. Several hiatuses and a rather underwhelming fourth Bloc Party album later, it now appears to be the project with the most longevity left in it. Whether it's where Okereke's true strengths lie, however, remains to be seen.

Bloc Party's large appeal originally came from their tightness as a group unit, the earnestness and unashamedly learned nature of Okereke's lyrics set against rhythmic drumming patterns and overzealous bass and guitar work. While their latest offering Four attempted to show the type of unity that was on display in plentiful amounts back in the days of Silent Alarm, its tired repetition and evident lack of ideas instead hinted at a discordant atmosphere within the group. Indeed, the band called it a day again soon after the release and drummer Matt Tong seems to have left the group altogether without much fanfare.

Left to his own devices and without a second, third, or fourth opinion, Trick suffers from a lack of quality control. Gone is the sense of urgency and immediacy that made the early parts of Bloc Party's back-catalogue so enriching. Instead Okereke's sincerity ladles on slow jam after slow jam until it becomes all but suffocating. It wouldn't be so much of a grueling listen if there was anything new on offer here, sadly there is not. Trick is more a straight rehash of '90s R&B than any kind of homage, and without the tunes to justify it. (www.iamkele.com)

Author rating: 4/10

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Average reader rating: 8/10



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