It seems that in the year 2010, we have traveled back in time. Where exactly? To an age where a synth upstaged the guitar, DJs replaced musicians, and when robots literally rocked. Raves have never been as popular, and suddenly festivals find their headliners behind a mask and a large black booth. It seems like all those daytime reruns of The Breakfast Club and Sixteen Candles have really made their impact — the 80s are back, and the music that dominated the decade has never been so relevant.
Theyve been around for over 10 years, featured in commercials and video games, and have played for millions worldwide. Yet with their latest release, Black Light, Groove Armada (GA) seems to finally be at the right place at the right time.
Englishmen Andy Cato and Tom Findlays eighth album features a different guest on every track, making Black Light more of Groove Armada and Friends Production than the typical GA that weve become so used to. At least for a somewhat disinterested fan, this comes as a pleasant surprise, as variety never hurt anyone.
The vocals are what truly make this album worth listening to. Smothered in reverb and layered harmonies, each track offers eloquent lyrics that far outshine their instrumental counterparts. One could scold GA for their overly simplistic messages, Just for tonight, feels good/Just for Tonight. But it is this exact accessibility to love and keep coming back for. In avoiding over-the-top lyrics, GA has perfected the ability to make feel good hits without a cutting edge. Theyre fun and easy to dance to, which proves theyve nailed their niche.
Dont expect heart-wrenching music in Black Light; you most likely wont find it. But if you look down for long enough, you might just see some toes, maybe even a whole foot, dancing drunkenly in beat.