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Bob Vylan - Humble As The Sun (Album Review)

Monday, 15 April 2024 Written by Adam England

Photo: Ki Price

Bob Vylan have developed into one of the UK’s most important bands, fusing their anti-establishment attitude and promotion of health and self-care together with the same flair that they meld grime and punk. On their third album ‘Humble As The Sun’ the duo add further elements to this heady mix, developing their sound to take in everything from electronica to grunge. 

The opening title track is altogether more zen than the sort of thing we’re used to from Bob Vylan, but it makes sense. With a feature from rising singer-songwriter Jerub, it pushes the posi side of their music to the forefront. They aren’t going to hold hands and sing Kumbaya in the face of social and economic injustice, but peace and love are things they’re big on. It’s defiant, pointed, and almost serene in its self-actualisation.

Bob Vylan are no strangers to British dance history – they sampled 808 State’s Cubik on 2022’s Take That – and there are no prizes for guessing which Fatboy Slim classic they sample on the juddering Right Here. 

Nonetheless, most of the album is full of the high-octane energy we’re used to. The first half of Reign has a Prodigy-esque instrumental before Bobby Vylan spits about everything from the monarchy to Mercury Prize snubs.

Dream Big is pure punk written for his younger self: “You can read Karl Marx ‘til you’re blue in the face / If you’ve never left the house with a tool by your waist / And your shoe tightly laced, 'cause thе feds might give chase.” He’s A Man, meanwhile, mocks toxic masculinity and Hunger Games compares the dystopian series to Tory Britain, where vulnerable people resort to taking part in contests on daytime TV to pay their utility bills.

As grim as the subject matter is, it’s a real joy to see Bob Vylan’s career flourish. On ‘Humble As The Sun’ it’s clear to see why it is. While their previous albums had plenty of standout moments, this is their most consistently impressive statement to date.

Bob Vylan Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Sat April 27 2024 - WOLVERHAMPTON KK's Steel Mill

Compare & Buy Bob Vylan Tickets at Stereoboard.com.


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