Hot Natured – Different Sides of the Sun
Label: Hot CreationsScore: 7/10
Jamie Jones, Ali Love, Lee Foss, and Luca C have been responsible for some of the most recognizable house tracks of recent years, from Hungry for the Power to Infinity; infectious songs that grab you instantly and make you want to dance. However, in order to give this album a fair assessment, you have to forget about all of this. Hot Natured are a Balearic-groove pop band and once you have that idea in your head, Different Sides of the Sun becomes much more enjoyable. Don’t dwell on what could have been.
The stand out track of the album is lead single Benediction. Benediction dominated the summer of 2012, or at least the playlists of Radio One and is a track that contains all the successful elements of sound that the individual members have cultivated over the last couple of years. Sadly, the majority of the other songs on the album lack a similar confidence and seem timid and lacklustre in comparison. However, the songs do grow on you the more you listen to them in a manner not unlike a musical equivalent of Stockholm Syndrome. Isis in particular used to make me cringe, but now I find it quite fun.
I may have been unkind about Hot Natured in the past but having just survived a week in Ibiza where the two options were soul destroying blah tech or fist pump Euro Trash, I can now appreciate their efforts a bit more. Sometimes you just want some vocals. And if it’s vocals you like, then Different Sides of the Sun has them in abundance.
This is what could also be its downfall. 2011’s Forward Motion is an example of when the minimal quality of Ali Love’s voice really works. But he is not a natural singer and it really shows on some tracks. Anabel Englund should definitely have been utilised more. Reverse Skydiving, another song I used to roll my eyes at, is actually one of the best songs on the album. The lyrics are slightly suspect, but her voice is pretty and you can overlook that. Roisin Murphy features on Alternate State, which is a likely candidate for the next single.
This album is pleasant, but it had the potential to be so much more. Hot Natured has produced a competent pop album, but anyone expecting more than that may be left disappointed.