The many of us who believed the two albums by the first incarnation of Trinity Roots were important statements about life here in Aotearoa will be disappointed - if not insulted - by this superbly produced but woefully undercooked album.
There are frequently threadbare lyrics ("We got to find the diamond in the rough" is the least of it) and it's mostly dated prog-rock with overtones of MOR-LA jazz-lite or faux-soul.
The crunch 'n' quiet King Crimson shapes of Bully is followed by the piano jazz-cum-reggae groove and inane lyrics of the 11 minute Citizen about some imagined, boastful wealthy type ("but you don't even know your neighbours" sing the soul-gal Greek chorus before the flute and sax solos) which barely moves beyond cliche.
The overriding political ethos revolves around crayon-like drawings of the soulless rich in superyachts, hapless citizens under the thumb of some EL Kaptain (PM Key "heading too far to starboard. To a fission"?) and/or the Governor ("Governor shepherds me like a helpless bovine"). Playing the victim in slow-tempo prog-plod is hardly appealing.
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This sounds good but delivers fewer barbs than it thinks it does, is replete with ponderous prog-rock dubby tropes and attempts to be portentous in its socio-political intent (Hercules, Haiku).
So, it's a "no" from me.
Artist: Trinity Roots
Label: Trinity Roots
Verdict: Retrogressive, intellectually simplistic prog-rock
- TimeOut / elsewhere.co.nz