On the 17th of August Jinja Safari released ‘Crescent Sun’, the first of their final two-part album. Despite being broken-up, they had 21 songs they wrote and wanted to release with the idea of a two-part album being divided into light and dark – ‘Crescent Sun’ consists of the happy, upbeat songs on the album and is presented in a kaleidoscope of playful sound and motion.
‘Slingshot’ opens up strongly, drawing back to the original sound of Jinja Safari with pulsing beats and rhythmic bongos. ‘Kilimanjaro’ features delicate harmonies, playful marimba and Spanish inspired guitar instrumentals. ‘Romulus’ changes things up a bit with choralic chanting. This song had a folk-tale feel to it with story-telling lyrics that remind me of Vampire Weekend.
Although the album started off well, after four tracks of upbeat fun I started to want something different. ‘Flux’ simply felt like more of the same. ‘Primary Colours’ had a chorus that didn’t seem to fit with the song.
Things got back on track with ‘Hand Of A Stranger’. Different instruments made for interesting sound and the vocals used a rhythmic, whispering technique. ‘Find My Way’ had a full sound that built up to an exciting and emotional finish. ‘Elaine’ was a cute love song that was a bit more laid back. I did find it disconcerting where the lyrics were pleading but the tune was upbeat.
‘Kick The Habit’ stepped away from the tropical beats and bongos to a poppy sound. The introduction was full of tension and provided some much needed variation. ‘Dangerous’ didn’t do much for me and ‘Storm’ seemed disjointed and didn’t flow, but ‘Quarantine’ was a good closer with its slightly electronic tinge.
Although this album was easy listening, it may have been better received had there been greater variation in their sound. A lot of the songs seemed to merge into one and became tiring to listen to when there was no rest from the energy – perhaps the two albums could have been released as one…