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rocket juice & the moon - Rocket Juice & The Moon
Eagerly awaited, strongly Fela-flavoured LP on Honest Jon's combining the talents of Damon Albarn, Tony Allen and Red Hot Chilli Peppers' Flea - plus a raft of special guests, including Erykah Badu and Paul Simonon. It can be hard not to be sceptical about these sort of star-studded chop-ups, but this one does feel cohesive and worthwhile - I mean, whatever you think of his dayjob, there's no doubting Flea's bass chops, and hearing him interacting with Albarn's slinky keys and Allen's typically low-slung but commanding drumming is a treat (although at various points it does get a bit noodly, to say the least). The Hypnotic Brass Ensemble bring some real fire to the Badu-vocalled 'Rocket Juice & The Moon', a kind of dubbed-out afrobeat number begging for soundsystem deployment come carnival time, but really this is an album that's most impressive when it's just the key players jamming away unbothered by leaving space for guests to do their thing. "Mixed and poison-tipped" by Rhythm & Sound's Mark Ernestus, this is a classy package indeed.