Kelis, Food – new album review

Kelis, Food album coverGrammy nominee, milkshake bringer and, interestingly, certified cordon bleu chef, Kelis makes her comeback with a new record, appropriately titled ‘Food’. But just how tasty is it? Laura Ghafoor finds out:

The new album from the well-seasoned Kelis takes you through every course, with Breakfast, Fish Fry and Biscuits ‘n’ Gravy and boy, has the songstress come a long way since her milkshake brought all the boys to the yard. The record starts upbeat and has your toes tapping immediately, before slowing right down with Floyd, a sultry, sexy track that wouldn’t be out of place in the background while you sip orange juice on a hot, Sunday morning. It seems like a natural progression from her past hit, Acapella.

This album is produced by Dave Sitek, who has famously worked with the likes of Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Foals. While this is completely different to those bands, it shares the fact that the individuality displayed and the original sounds on the album make you sit up and listen. The use of brass backing Kelis’ smooth voice is almost regal, and while it’s easy-listening it absolutely avoids being dull or run of the mill.

Bless the Telephone is the standout. It’s a short but sweet number that is perfect for winding down. The stripped-back mixture of the male vocal with Kelis’ higher tones over the backing of a folksy-sounding guitar are nothing short of beautiful. It’s the kind of song that could make you feel extremely in love. Maybe this was what Kelis had in mind when she described this record as “a kind of unspoken lovefest.” I couldn’t stop listening to it.

A minor criticism of Food is that it’s a little long. With so many excellent tunes though, it’s likely that trimming the fat was a difficult task.

Kelis’ old tracks are much more gimmicky than the ones on this album. While there isn’t any one song which is an obvious, surefire top ten hit, this record has a perfect mix of love and lust. It’s funky, catchy and fun. Food will be lush to play in the car in the sunshine. Windows down, shades on, volume up.

Food is released Friday 18 April through Ninja Tune and Inertia. Kelis plays at Brighton’s Great Escape Festival in May. The line-up is epic, so if you are UK-based, then get along to Brighton on 8-10 May. Details here.



Kelis, Food review by Laura Ghafoor.