Massive Attack –
(Virgin Records, 2010)
It’s been seven years since legendary Bristol trip-hop outfit Massive Attack released their last real album &- or 12, for those who choose to dismiss 100th Window as Robert “3D” Del Naja’s personal project.
Heligoland brings stronger hip-hop influences, but also touches of glitchy electronics and acoustic guitar. The album opens with the dramatic “Pray For Rain,” featuring TV on the Radio vocalist Tunde Adebimpe. Other contributions, like Blur’s Damon Albarn on “Saturday Come Slow” or Mazzy Star’s Hope Sandoval on “Paradise Circus,” show that the guests tend to shine more than the songs. While the tracks are individually quite good, the album as a whole is fractured and inconsistent.
Heligoland is a fair offering, but it is in no way groundbreaking. It easily falls behind Massive Attack’s first three albums, but, considering how brilliant they were, it’s certainly not a shame.
Trial track: “Pray for Rain”