This Level 42 album strengthens the band's pop leanings, especially with its stronger emphasis on keyboards, but without losing their funky sound completely.
The opening “The Chant Has Begun”, with indeed an oft-repeated chanting refrain, sounds more slick than what the band had done before, and sets the tone for the rest of the album, some of which is good, such as the lovely "Kansas City Milkman", "Hot Water", and "A Floating Life", where the keyboards really blare effectively, along with some harmonic singing, although at the expense of Mark King's distinctive basslines.
However, by the last two songs, the album loses a bit of its luster. "Kouyaté" brings back the tribal drumming featured on "The Chant Has Begun", but it feels like the style has outstayed its welcome a bit, while the potentially dreamy "Hours by the Window" holds back any real chance for entering slumberland with its overly intrusive guitar lines.
is certainly a worthy Level 42 album, but it falls short of being among the band's best. Ultimately, I can't help feeling it could've worked out better, and a feeling of slight disappointment might likewise affect other listeners upon its conclusion, especially given the expectations created by the earlier tracks. Rated:
by Reviewer: The Doctor