Review of Flashlight EP by Bonobo

We much prefer Bonobo's stage name to his real one (Simon Green - all a bit call centre manager, really), but otherwise there's always been lots and lots to love about his work, particularly in the last album 'The North Borders', his fifth and finest to date. Just as the 175 date world tour in support of said release is winding down, it seems Bonobo is now finding himself with itchy fingers, hence this EP, which along with a recent accompanying mixtape, showcases a much more lustrous, club orientated sound.

Bonobo Flashlight EP

Also, whilst we're here: long live the EP, say us. Sometimes life's just too short for getting immersed by a whole album thing, so we salute Bonobo for bunging out 'Flashlight' which is, just as Goldilocks would say if she'd happened to have stolen the three bears' phone, just right. The title track is right, we reckon, up her petty criminal street with it's looped guitar strum, pfzting hi-hat and warmly Balearic melodies, a delicious concoction that beats boring old porridge any day.

The best thing about the opener though is that it's good, but it's not as good as the other two accompanying tracks: 'Pelican' is a hypnotic bundle of luscious, funky late night deep house stuff, a little darker but still elegant, whilst 'Return To Air' slides into another territory altogether; alt. R&B with intriguing half broken beats and cut-up vocals, a deeply soulful outro that deftly showcases our man's versatility. See, we've even got all the way to the end of the review without mentioning the words "Chill" or "Out", because we haven't needed them. But you could do that to this too, if you really wanted. 'Flashlight' is the sound of a man at the peak of his powers, whatever his real name is.


Andy Peterson

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