AGE OF CHANCE
Mecca (Virgin LP / Cassette / CD)
be something in the holy water up there in Leeds. Two and a half years ago
at the height of AOC's last assault on the public they appeared to get on
down with any and every 'positive' cultural force that moved. Having
It made for a marvellously challenging manifesto, and with the exception of the odd startling track ('Don't Get Mad Get Even' for one), it made for a hectoring, ugly racket in dodgy Lycra shorts.
is a bold re-invention of the old AOC. They have replaced their former rant-rap
sloganeer front-person with a proper soul type singer, Charles Hutchinson.
And although they are still urging us to get-up-and-go-for-it while
But here and there in the wall of positivity there are cracks to be found. The two noticeably deviant tracks, the sombre keyboards shuffle 'Snowbiind' and the spartan funk of 'What's Happening?' dip into predictable social conscience territory- credit card debt and market economy heartlessness. And in their loosely formulated embrace of funky spirituality ('Mecca'; "I'm living in a world possessed / And I'm never gonna rest / Til Mecca is moving West") there is a bubbly fervour which eventually starts to grate.
A little less fanaticism on the road to rhythmic elation would have been no bad thing, but this is still a pilgrimage worth getting in step with.
Progress satisfactory. (7)