There’s something oddly soothing about sitting down and pressing play on a new Goldie release….in 2017. Even moreso when you realize the sounds coming out of your listening device are very much Goldie despite the lengthy (Nineteen years!) break of releasing an album of all original material.
And it’s epic. Really friggin’ epic. “Horizon” kicks things off with a seven minute, sensual yet driving, slab of drum ‘n’ bass propelled by Terri Walker’s airy vocals. “Prism” is otherworldly, built around Goldie’s signature beats and a synthetic melody that’s killer. According to Goldie himself in a track-by-track breakdown on the new album: “When I’m creating a melody it feels like raising a deity. When it feels like that, you’ve done it right.” He’s done it right on “Prism”.
“Mountain” feels like old school trip-hop with its’ sultry build up thanks to Natalie Pryor while “Castaway” is a celebration and then some hearkening back to the b-boy days of the ’80’s. “I Think Of You” is destined to be a dancefloor favorite led by Mika Wassenaar Price and segue’s nicely into “Truth” with Jose James delivering some heartfelt soul on this piano-laden track.
The grand “Redemption” follows next and is a whopping eighteen minutes of Goldie goodness encapsulating everything that has made the artist so unique and still managing to break new ground as it climbs to its’ percussive finale. Completely keeping new and old fans on their toes and glued to the speakers to hear what comes next, Goldie delivers a Pat Metheny reinterpretation of “Are You Going With Me?” entitled “Tu Viens Avec Moi?” (Get it?) next featuring haunting guitars, sweet beats, and Aaron Janik with the smoothest trumpet licks around.
“The Ballad Celeste” is another, like “Truth”, that is this beautiful outlier almost serving as the glue in between all the drum ‘n’ bass with Natalie Duncan this time providing vocals. “This Is Not A Lovesong” follows that trajectory even more delivered in a breathy and sexy style, almost as if it was sung by a songstress in a 1920’s speakeasy.
“Triangle” brings the beats back which truly glisten on this ultimate drum ‘n’ bass track that just about transcends the genre that Goldie helped cultivate until “Tomorrow’s Not Today” cements that statement by adding Pryor into the mix along with gospel elements and more to take the track to the electro heavens. Tyler Lee Daly closes out The Journey Man on the symphonic, heartfelt “Run, Run, Run” which, according to Goldie, is “the top of the mountain, the house on the hill. A photograph of flames, a snapshot of time. A eulogy for my life.” And a fitting end to this epic Journey.
If you’re looking for the straight up d ‘n’ b mastermind of the ’90’s from start to finish on The Journey Man then I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this ain’t your album. If you’ve followed Goldie’s trajectory, though, and came here for a true album then you are definitely in the right place.