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Funk Odyssey

Jamiroquai’s Funky Grooves Aren’t All That

By Patrick Hereford

Staff Writer

Jamiroquai’s new album Funk Odyssey deviates wildly from what listeners have come to expect. This new album falls short, both musically and artistically speaking. Lacking music with an underlying theme and a somewhat danceable beat, it’s quite different from the group’s previous three albums -- there’s no catchy hook, a staple of the previous albums.

Comparing this to previous albums is quite impossible and nearly unjust. Their first two records, Emergency on Planet Earth and Return of the Space Cowboy, sold sixteen million copies in total. Their previous two records, Synkronized and Traveling Without Moving, sold eleven million in total. The difference in their new album and the previous four albums is that the past few had at least two songs with a discernable beat. Funk Odyssey has not one discernable and danceable beat.

Everyone in the 90s heard of Jamiroquai one way or another. Virtual Insanity, which is part of the Traveling Without Moving album, topped the charts for quite some time. It was on the Billboard Top 10, MTV’s Top 10, and even the Top 10 in radio stations everywhere. This song was one of their best songs ever made. Another was “Canned Heat,” off the Synkronized album. Made in 1996, it still gets play in clubs across America and Mexico.

Will this happen with any songs on Funk Odyssey? It is possible that this could happen, but the odds are stacked against them. The leading single off their new album “Little L” has little potential in its music potency. The song lacks a clear, definitive beat. These aspects were all found in Virtual Insanity and Canned Heat.

If anyone has ever noticed, Jamiroquai’s album only produces one good song that reaches across America. Many other groups such as Creed, Metallica, even Pennywise have multiple songs that make the Top 10 in America. People do not buy CDs for just one song; that is why singles are made. Jamiroquai acquired a new guitar player, his name is Rob. This could have been part of the reason that this CD lacks musical flavor.

Once known for their amazing and unique music styles, the band is now going to be known for their lack of rhythm. There is not one prominent song on the CD that has any possibility of taking on the pop charts.

No one should purchase this album, unless they are just trying to waste their money on a pointless album. Usually, buying albums from upcoming wonders is fun and entertaining, especially if you do not know them. If you do not know Jamiroquai, now is not the time to find out who they are. Maybe in their next album they will get out of this music making slump and reach the top 10 again. Jamiroquai is full of potential, but A Funk Odyssey is not full of any potential. Please beware of this CD and purchase one of their previous albums.