ZANG TUMMM TUMB ARTICLES “the first draft of history”


HE WAS ALMOST COOL ONCE. AS THE PEBBLY VOCALIST and rotating head on Adamskis ‘Killer, Seal intrigued a nation with his perky mini-dreads and mysterious Nigerian tribal scarring. Then, instead of dragging his weathered tones to the nearest junglist for a good time-stretching, he chose the path of Sade and made pan-global soul-pop for the Gold Blend generation. And now, with ‘Human Being, hes gone trip-hop and writes songs about Tupac and Biggie.

No, really. The title track observes hip-hops dead—Were mere human beings/We die”—as a breakbeat shuffles gravely along underneath. ‘State Of Grace adds a light dusting of Bristolian jiggery pokery to its piano-bar vibe, while ‘Latest Craze wriggles with classy urban beats. A thousand dinner parties chew on, oblivious.

The remaining 12 tracks simply reaffirm what you already knew: the man is an econo-size Lighthouse Family—all swelling strings and post-prandial spirituality—only, thanks to the production contributions from Trevor Horn, Anne ‘Art Of Noise Dudley, Wendy & Lisa and William Orbit, with expensive studio knobs on.(3)

Kitty Empire