Drawing from a wide range of influences like disco, funk, soul and reggae, Life & Livin’ It is a positive album, with a positive message. However, it perhaps suffers from overly careful arrangements and is undone, at points, by its own cleverness, leaving it often sounding overproduced.
Nowhere is the album’s positive message more evident than on U’Huh. Gang vocals constantly repeat the refrain “Where all gonna be alright” amidst layered horns and funk-inspired riffs. Theme From Life & Livin has some serious LCD Soundsystem vibes – simple arrangements, catchy melodies and a groovy bassline – while Telephone is Gallab’s attempt at an out-and-out disco banger with all the usual trappings; layered synths, horns and falsetto vocals.
In Life & Livin’ It, Sinkane shows meticulous attention to detail, the album full of subtle embellishments and clever hooks. Produced by Sinkane himself, it’s just as crisp and clear as one would come to expect from one of his albums. But this proves to be a problem for the album as a whole; it comes across as sounding overproduced, leaving the listener waiting for something unexpected and raw to surprise them.
By Jack Stavrakis