Trip hop. Flip flop. Be Bop. Doo Wop. Uh, yeah.
Okay, so that wasn't the most original and/or exciting introduction in the world, but after writing about artist after artist that sort of fall into that fast and loose genre of trip-hop, I was sort of running out of ways to begin my review. I mean, in the past couple years, I've reviewed the Sneaker Pimps, Olive, Tricky, Portishead, Lamb, Perfume Tree, Esthero, Baby Namboos, Baxter, and several other groups that sort of fall into the same category. Although nearly all the group have individual characteristics that define themselves, there's no denying that the sound has exploded in recent years and definitely found itself landing anywhere from the top 40 to underground where it started.
The Supreme Beings Of Leisure are a four piece group that falls somewhere between the Sneaker Pimps (R.I.P. I think) and Esthero. Although it's pretty darn mainstream, but without falling into the trap of being utterly boring. Not only that, but the production is flawless, mixing bossa nova sounds with breakbeats while throwing in a little jazz and just a touch of dirty guitars for good measure. It a lot of ways, it reminds me of James Bond soundtrack material, because it has all the typical sounds, including the sultry female vocals.
While there are the obvious radio-pegged tracks like the somewhat silly "Golddigger" (mixing up a touch of flutes with slightly feedbacked guitars and well-placed record scratching) and the completely hummable "Strangelove Addiction" (with sitar picking that soon fades into an almost grimey dance/disco track), there are tracks like the rumbling downtempo swank of "Truth From Fiction" that work amazingly with a lot more of a subtle edge. With a bit of stringed instruments and a big gut-rumbling beat and some spooky atmospherics, it sounds like a slightly less foreboding Portishead.
Of course, the group follows that track right up with the shiny happy (pun intended) "You're Always The Sun" and it reminds one of what Deee-Lite would probably sound like right about now if they hadn't disbanded. Still, this is a group that obviously has some talent and can defintely write a track that will stick in your head and make you sway your hips. It's a bit sugary and glossy sounding, but not one track on the release lingers on too long and it's just about right for a sunny summer afternoon. Fans of Morcheeba, Esthero, Olive, or the Sneaker Pimps should definitely check them out.