British lo-fi outfit made groundbreaking work with their debut Thunder, Lightning, Strike. A blend of hip-hop, pop, electronic, bossa nova, and 70s elevator music. The Go Team was bringing something fresh and untapped.
The new-found success surely affected their approach to the next critically acclaimed Proof of Youth, as they moved closer and closer towards becoming a one-dimensional hip-hop non-sequitur. Not my cup of tea, but I will readily admit that The Go Team’s latest Rolling Blackouts is absolutely wonderful.
Strangely nostalgic in its sound, Rolling Blackouts goes back to what The Go Team does best. Refreshing and modernizing older sounds. Take the short “Lazy Poltergeist”, a delicate piano interlude that seems too long for a simpler time when keyboards were all you really needed.
Yet not too much earlier on the album, “Apollo Throwdown” takes a harp, an orchestra of strings. Also laid a backbeat down, on which TGT drops their signature anthemic rap vocals. “Bust-Out Brigade” begins with blaring horns more suited for an 80s cop movie. But this instrumental gets more and more intriguing as layers of xylophone and synthesizers get a hold of it.
“Buy Nothing Day” sounds like it might have been ripped right out of a mid-90s pop song, but it works. The Beach-Boys-like “Ready to Go Steady” is perhaps the most joyful song on the album. And if the chorus doesn’t stick in your head for days I’d be surprised.
I could go on, but for the sake of brevity, I won’t. So go and grab a copy of The Go Team’s Rolling Blackouts.
Listen to “Apollo Throwdown”
Listen to “Ready to Go Steady“