Goldie - Timeless
Buy this CD from Amazon.com United States
Buy this CD from Amazon.com Canada
Buy this CD from Amazon.com United Kingdom
Buy this CD from Insound.com.
Goldie
Timeless
(FFRR / London)

I still remember reading articles back about the time that this release came out calling it a landmark in the jungle genre and pretty much a redefining album. That was over half a decade ago and given that look back, it holds up pretty darn well, but I still can't find myself giving it a "landmark" rating, even thinking back to the first time that I heard it. One thing it certainly did do was help put the Metalheadz collective on the map even more and made it easier for artists like Photek, Source Direct, and others to break out and establish themselves even more.

One thing that you have to understand from the beginning about Goldie is that he tends to favor the soulful sounds of drum and bass. While he is capable of banging out a hard-edged, darker track (especially under pseudonyms), most of the time he opts for a bit of a lighter edge on his own studio projects. Another thing is that he's never let overindulgence stand in his way. While it wasn't as much of a problem on this, his debut release, it definitely made itself abundantly obvious on the overblown 60-minute long "Mother" on his Saturnzreturn release. That album was less restrained in general, though, and although it had moments where the experimentation worked in his favor, neither one of the 2CD was very easy to sit through completely.

One might think that with an opening track of well over 20 minutes on a debut album, overindulgence might just be a problem, but fortunately the album-titled track of "Timeless" is exactly what the critics were talking about when they all started talking about epic drum and bass. It has soul without being cheesy and goes through three different movements without seeming overlong, all the while morphing into a bigger and badder track until closing out at the end. It's like a great jazz track that captures the sound of the city after midnight, when it's not quite sure whether it wants to settle down for the night or stay up and rock it until the sun comes up and it goes through both options.

"Saint Angel" is one of those tracks that I mentioned earlier in which Goldie actually rips out the stops and pounds things down (although you can still hear somewhat cheesy diva "huh's" under the beats at the beginning before things really get down and grinding. "State Of Mind" drops the drum and bass tip for the most part in favor of an acid jazz feel and it kind of feels out of place before steady progression of the very nicely done "Sea Of Tears." The track combines some nice guitar work with a ton of shimmering and sweeping sounds and even though it's the second longest track on the disc, it doesn't feel too overly long or forced (despite some very blatant vocal samples about halfway through).

the 1-2 hits of "Angel" and "Sensual" again try to turn on the sensuality (natch), but work in varying degrees. The alternately dark and light "Kemistry" tears things up quite a bit again before the album closes out with another piano and synth driven track (with mild drum and bass undercurrents) of "You And Me." It's a bit of an underwhelming way to close out the disc, but again it shows Goldie opting for more soulful sounds (which don't always work). Still, the album is a solid release (much moreso than his follow-up) and "Timeless" may very well be the track that he's remembered for unless he manages to pull something else off. It's a bit on the light side overall, but a good listen nonetheless.

rating: 7.510
Aaron Coleman 2003-06-19 00:00:00