Multiply - Jamie Lidell

Universal acclaim - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. This is a major step forward in pushing the IDM aesthetic into the bigger territory of soul and R&B music.
  2. A silky, bright, singing-in-the-shower masterstroke of joy and elation.
  3. Although Lidell's voice lacks muscle and butter, he knows how to launch a falsetto, and the beats on "A Little Bit More" and "The City" should not be played within earshot of anyone wearing a pacemaker.
  4. Multiply sounds like he picked up some ancient reel-to-reel tape from lost Holland-Dozier-Holland sessions and gave them a 2005 production spit-and-polish.
  5. 90
    Truly strange and beautiful. [Jul/Aug 2005, p.102]
  6. Lidell has created an album of flawless, imaginative, and radical funk grooves.
  7. Multiply is not just the year’s most adventurous album, it’s one of its most melodic, soulful, and engaging as well.
  8. How he makes good on such a seemingly noxious premise remains a mystery... but Lidell's star shines from whatever angle it might be spied.
  9. His is a rare talent, demanding to be heard.
  10. Listen to Multiply once and you'll be struck by how reverent it is; listen to it three times and you'll start to notice the microscopic digital artifacts and subtle tweaks that give it personality and pop.
  11. If even a hint of Jamiroquai makes you gag, stay away; otherwise, proceed to the dance floor, please. [22 Jul 2005, p.74]
  12. Outside the charismatic skill of Lidell's shapeshifting vocals and his forward-looking arrangements, the actual songs of Multiply aren't of as indelible an essence as the classics that they imitate.
  13. His skill rests in the realisation that you can't airbrush soul: so, instead of smoothing rough edges, these cuts of cyborg funk fidget with digital tics and gasps. [11 Jun 2005, p.67]
  14. 'Multiply' sees the flavours of Al Green, Curtis Mayfield, Prince and Sly Stone twisted into 2005 with subtly inventive touches and modern production suss.
  15. 80
    The heritage soul signposts multiply with almost hallucinatory rapidity. [Aug 2005, p.104]
  16. 80
    Multiply marks the full flowering of a singular talent. [Jul 2005, p.99]
  17. An album that, in its best moments, draws comparisons to at-peak Prince and, at its worst, lands in the respectable company of Nikka Costa’s Everybody Got Their Something.
  18. Multiply sacrifices cohesion in its quest for stylistic diversity, but it’s a bravura tour through the smooth sounds and hot jams of yesteryear.
  19. Lidell has a fine voice, arguably one of the most potent white soul singers England has given us since Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie.
  20. 75
    Sound[s] like Prince cutting the ass out of Squarepusher's pants. [Aug 2005, p.103]
  21. 70
    The idea is to build a monorail between Aphex Twin and Stax Records; the songwriting eventually slacks off, but Lidell's performances don't. [Aug 2005, p.111]
  22. A blistering song set with the playful spirit of '80s Prince. [Jul 2005, p.115]
  23. More than a patchy but occasionally brilliant album, Multiply is the whisper that the greatest soul music, rather than being trapped in our memories of times gone by, may yet play free in days to come.
  24. He really is pouring everything he has into the whole thing, but there's so much overly earnest, reverential, "let's get back to making real music" energy floating around that you can sense it nibbling away at the desire to make something that sounds like today.

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