It’s been two years since we’ve had a new album from Brit-rock young gun Jamie T – making the fruits of his newest sonic calibration both anticipated and much more appreciated. It’s 2016 now, and the South London songwriter emerges as an intensified, murky refining takes the shape of his fourth record; Trick. No easy task, it seems as though he’s taken to the sounds explored on this album rather well, portraying them effectively in true reckoning manner.
With a punk, stylistic modernist momentum, echoed transparencies revolve around the most luscious sounds explored within confines of the record. The songs emerge from a darkness, tinged with shadowed feelings of remorse and contemplation. It’s party music at the heart, however, with the eccentricity and visioned lengths maintaining the propelled reflection that showcases his inner musical attitude. A viciousness and cerebral intensity fold into the tonal spectrum on the record – adhering to a sincere likeness and higher songcraft magnitude. Power Over Men presents a ska, reggae country vibe with shades of brit-rock charm and glisten. The spirit of Joe Strummer encrusts inside the bold lengths undertaken on Robin Hood, following punkish feelings down a rabbit hole of carefree expressionism, giving a slight nod to The Clash’s Bankrobber. Jamie’s vocals punch through the microphone with an analogue eagerness and confident uproar. During the dark and veracious stumbles heard in Tescoland, a supermarket sampled intro transgresses into a quirky, upbeat and pompadour rocker anthem. Police Tapes services as the album’s metaphorical middle finger, growling through mid-paced stoner metal vibes and a prickly rawness both bully and sore. Ghoulish thick basslines and splintered drum pounds institute during the vocally impressive Dragon Bones, whilst Joan Of Arc lingers with a rough sweetness and durable backbone. A quick breath of fresh air makes way for Solomon Eagle, as it seizes a hip-hop presence and well mastered fruitful environment within the breakbeat, distortion efforts. There’s also a noble amount of funk and dub infused blows learned throughout Trick, heard especially in the album’s closing track – Crossfire Love. Jamie rolls through speedy raps and stories touched with vintage guitar echoes and King Tubby drum claps. Drowning out the sadness and heartfelt emotion as he returns to hooks – “Caught In The Crossfire Love” he sings, easing out the record with a radiant polish.
Jamie T’s Trick properly juggles through winding paths that shuffle between his punk-rock, reggae, dub and rap strengths. He employs a knowledge of music history which is vastly evident throughout all of the songwriting and plush display within the sound. Not one to shy away by any means, he subjects the listener to a personal musical growth, especially if one were to comparably relate this album to any of his previous work. It’s this that enables the record to stand out perhaps as his most raw and durable body of music so far – presenting with it an undeniable shift from grappling maturity to heightened musical establishment. There’s a whole lot of rebellion and cheekiness in there, too.