Much has happened in the four years since â€šÃ„Ãºspace cowboyâ€šÃ„Ã¹ Jay Kay and co. â€šÃ„Ã¬ better known as Jamiroquai â€šÃ„Ã¬ have graced us with a new album. For frontman/activist/partier Kay, a life of club-kid excess, his notorious headbutting incident with UK paparazzi, the (amicable) departure of co-writer/keyboard player Toby Smith, and kicking a destructive coke habit seem to have put things in to perspective for the 35-year-old artist seemingly having suffered from (or more accurately, enjoyed) a split personality. This newfound focus shines through on the bandâ€šÃ„Ã´s sixth studio album, the hard hitting and disco-drenched Dynamite.Unlike prior Jamiroquai records, Dynamite lends itself more towards straight-ahead dance anthems. True, Jamiroquai has always been known for their trademark dance/funk/disco fusions (e.g. â€šÃ„ÃºCosmic Girl,â€šÃ„Ã¹ â€šÃ„ÃºCanned Heatâ€šÃ„Ã¹), but nowhere does such a fondness lie more so than on this release. Except for a few tracks, most songs on Dynamite keep up with heavy guitars, solid bass lines, and a quickened pace that screams â€šÃ„ÃºSaturday Night Feverâ€šÃ„Ã¹ â€šÃ„Ã¬ and with titles such as â€šÃ„ÃºDynamite,â€šÃ„Ã¹ â€šÃ„ÃºElectric Mistress,â€šÃ„Ã¹ and â€šÃ„ÃºStarchild,â€šÃ„Ã¹ how could they not?
Standout songs include the disco-driven title track, the exuberant and electric guitar-heavy â€šÃ„ÃºLove Blind,â€šÃ„Ã¹ and the soft, heartfelt â€šÃ„ÃºWorld That He Wantsâ€šÃ„Ã¹ â€šÃ„Ã¬ a jab at Americaâ€šÃ„Ã´s commander-in-chief. Other tracks are fun and more than fit for the dance floor. Backed by a chorus of soulful divas chanting, â€šÃ„ÃºWeâ€šÃ„Ã´ve been giving hate a chance / Weâ€šÃ„Ã´ve got all this love to give,â€šÃ„Ã¹ â€šÃ„Ãº(Donâ€šÃ„Ã´t) Give Hate a Chanceâ€šÃ„Ã¹ was made for the Love Paradeâ€šÃ„Â¶ or for Cherâ€šÃ„Ã´s comeback tour. While the absence of another â€šÃ„ÃºVirtual Insanityâ€šÃ„Ã¹ may hinder a large American response, expect Dynamite to be a hit with solid Jamiroquai fans.