Utah Jazz Returns With His 5th Studio Album ‘The Music Factory’
Posted by Adam on 17th September 2016
Utah Jazz is now on album number 5. Yes, 5. That’s not just down to output, but also longevity. People turn to him for a special brand of music, that being grass roots liquid. He has an inherent ability to produce luscious and delectable beats sitting on top of rolling, picturesque drum and bass postcards. If they were real, these postcards would depict the happiest sun kissed places in the depths of your brainbox.
Promised Land is the album opener and it really sets the tone, that of classy vibes. I mean Christ, does this guy have a studio made out of sand castles on a beach or something? It’s so summery it’s ridiculous. Growth Comes, the second track of the album is no finer example of this. Simple bass tones, exquisite sample selection and vocal arrangement literally pick you up from your seat and hand deliver you to the sunniest parts of your memory. It’s like being on a beach sipping cocktails with your oldest friend.
Can You Handle It? featuring the ever soulful and roller riding DRS adds a slightly harder edge to the project as a whole but lets be honest, aside from Calibre, these two are a match made in heaven right? DRS is able to turn his hand back to his Broke N’English days of pure UK Hip Hop lyricism rather than just trying to find a hook for a DnB tune. Give It To Me Right is also slightly harder, but it’s comparing smooth peanut butter to crunchy peanut butter (why does everything always come down to food with me? Apologies readers).
Neverland is a total delight too. Beginning with a half time rhythm and then dropping into some classic Intalex & ST Files style rumbling bassline it’s like all the Mutt tunes which stopped coming out are still around, alive and kicking. No disrespect there to Utah Jazz, it’s just a craft that he and Mutt so distinctly remind me of.
Testament is a definite highlight for me. From the second it opens it’s like you’ve got your trousers rolled up and you’re wading across a stream in the leafiest summer field. This whole album just oozes good summery vibes like sap from a tree. Sat in that tree singing a sweet lullaby would MC Tina who’s appearance on Memories is almost so subtle and serene you wouldn’t notice she’s there at all. Each kick and snare are like apples falling on the ground around you, each perfectly placed by a producer doing what he does best.
The LP’s other big feature is Random Movement, yet a another long serving liquid knight. If i’m honest, it’s not my favourite track from the album as oddly, the polished Hospitalesque sound almost sits too far above the rest of the sample crackling content. It’s like someones turned up to a house party wearing a tux, but luckily, these two are smooth enough to pull it off.
From the artwork right the way through to the very last beat this is a really fun album. Sometimes people forget music doesn’t necessarily have to slap you round the chops with a wet kipper or astonish the pants off you right there on the dance floor. Producers like Utah Jazz have made a living from being a rare thing in life – reliable. I’ll be honest, when it hit the inbox i wasn’t massively excited (hangs head in shame). This album is pure summer, pure vibes and an absolute treat to sit down and listen to.
My advice would be to shake Utah Jazz’s hand the next time you see him and thank him for continuing to be the musical comrade he’s been for years, a one man music factory indeed. And also a pat on the back to the Spearhead crew for making sure as many fans of soulful, delicious liquid d’n’b have the chance to hear it wouldn’t go amiss.
Big up your numerous chests.
Call someone with a rooftop to sit on, crack open a bottle of something suitable and get this album pumping out the speakers.