This Was Supposed to Be the Future

The Nextmen

2007: Antidote ANTCD120

  1. Let It Roll

    featuring Alice Russell

  2. Blood Fire

    featuring Dynamite MC

  3. Did No Wrong

    featuring Joe Dukie and Toby Vane

  4. Tuffen Up

    featuring LSK

  5. Knowledge Be Born

    featuring Naledge of Kidz in the Hall

  6. Something Got You

    featuring Zarif

  7. Concentrate

    featuring Dynamite MC

  8. The Drop

    featuring Joe Dukie, T Laing, and J Lindsay

  9. Let It Be

    featuring Niney the Observer and Toby Vane

  10. Move

    featuring Zarif

  11. Piece of the Pie

    featuring Demolition Man

  12. Camera Tricks

    featuring Sway and Bridgette Amolah

  13. Memory Lane

    featuring LSK and Zarif

  14. This Was Supposed to Be the Future

    featuring Zarif and Toby Vane

Another treat Paris’s still-wonderful Radio Nova brought to my ears…I bought it because of Alice Russell’s killer vocals on “Let It Roll,” but any of Joe Dukie’s tracks would have sold me on first listen—what a gorgeous voice he has, and such heartbreakingly tender delivery! Mind you, after a slightly slow start his performance on “The Drop” gives us a taste of what would happen if Lou Rawls and K C & the Sunshine Band were contemporaneously fused today (and if you know how tasty and sexy each of those elements can be on its own in its context, you’ll realize how superbly groovy this track is and how seriously infectious it can become). Does Joe Dukie sound this great in the context of Fat Freddy’s Drop? I may need to investigate.

Really the only tracks I don’t love on this album are (unsurprisingly) the two rap ones (“Knowledge Be Born” and “Camera Tricks”), and even the latter I can enjoy if I’m in the right mood. Also, I’m not sure what the currently appropriate name is for the vocal stylings of the guy called “Demolition Man” who’s featured on a few of these tracks—the English Beat fan in me wants to say Toasting, but that’s probably considered archaic now—but anyway he’s melodic and expressive enough to keep it out of rap’s tedium and even make it quite fun. The title track, which closes the album, seems at first to be nothing special but grew on me like a disquieting nostalgia, as was no doubt its intended nature.