For her third solo album, Hollie Cook – once vocalist with The Slits – really looks to have found her musical peak. The first two albums were enjoyable enough, but this is top-level down tempo music that Cook raises through virtue of her excellent vocals. It helps that she has such a strong, inventive production team behind her. Youth is the main producer, but all the drums are sampled from Prince Fatty and Horseman’s ‘In Saturday Night Style’, and other luminaries such as Jah Wobble and Alex Paterson are also involved. In fact Cook modestly calls out Wobble’s involvement, saying that she used his cast-offs and wrote music over them instead! It is her vocals that are the winning factor here, given with a breezy warmth but never lacking in genuine feeling. ‘Angel Fire’ is a really strong start, setting the quality threshold high, and if anything the album’s appeal is enhanced further by the faster ‘Ghostly Fading’ (where Cook is ‘trying to find a little piece of heaven’), the sultry ‘Lunar Addiction’ and the brightly voiced title track, a pure antidote to grey skies. An uplifting record that sets the mind and body just right.
5 out of 5