Album Review: Jamie T – Trick

Trick

Released 2nd September 2016

Words: Lewis Rogers

jamie t trickAfter taking a five year hiatus from music, Wimbledon’s Jamie T made a triumphant return to the scene with his excellent 2014 album Carry On The Grudge. Thankfully Jamie hasn’t made us wait half a decade for a new album again and is back with Trick, his fourth LP. Trick masterfully meshes together multiple styles that he is well known for, not deserting the softer Indie of his last effort but re-embracing the punk and rap fused sound that won him so many fans back in 2007. The result is a fantastically eclectic offering that takes the best elements of his previous three albums, with some of the sharpest and smartest song writing that he has delivered so far.

The genre dodging opening track Tinfoil Boy is a wild departure from Jamie’s previous songs and gives the album an unexpected beginning, being the most rock-heavy track he has produced yet. Bringing to mind both Arctic Monkeys and Slaves, it begins with a smooth Alex Turner-esque verse only to plunge into a chorus which oozes pure anger and paranoia.

Devotees of Jamie’s older musical style are well served by the sample filled tracks Drone Strike and Police Tapes, the kind of hard hitting, politically charged tunes that flavoured his first two albums.

The excellent Power Over Men is a slick and atmospheric track telling the dark story of a femme fatale and builds upon the style of indie pop that was prevalent in his 2014 album. With a suitably haunting chorus and an attractive and catchy hook, the song is as mysterious as alluring as its character.

Album highlight, Tescoland, detracts from the darker aspects of other songs on the record with its bouncy fusion of punk and reggae, and has echoes of the themes of British cultural identity and home comforts explored in Blur’s Parklife album. Sure to be a new live favourite, the track packs a cracker of a chorus that is destined to be loudly belted out by fans at future gigs. This same light hearted sense of fun is all over Robin Hood, a catchy and cheery song that is clearly a loving tribute to Jamie’s heroes The Clash.

Closing track Self Esteem is the most personal on the album, a reflective and moody song that finds Jamie exploring his inner demons. The distorted and crackly vocals perfectly capture the feelings of helplessness and melancholy expressed in the lyrics

Trick sees Jamie T at the top of his game, developing the styles of music he tackled in his previous works, experimenting with new sounds and offering a varied and unpredictable set of songs on an album that consistently surprises. The number of genres and musical styles that get a spotlight here cement his reputation as an extensive and diverse musician, but every song has his own unique stamp on them. He is an artist who has built his own recognisable style but is unafraid to try new things. I can’t wait to see what he has in store for the next album.

 

Listen to Trick here:

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