Hollie Cook’s self-titled debut album, released back in June of this year on Mr Bongo, is a beguiling affair as her silky, soft voice treads a fine line between sensuous and melancholy. She is backed by the production of Prince Fatty, with whom she has worked before, and the album bares all his sound making hallmarks as he puts together a dubby, ska, rocksteady montage that encapsulates all of reggaes finest qualities. This is further endorsed with guitar work from Dennis Bovell and Pioneers singer George Dekker plus some DJ chat from another Fatty cohort the impressive Horseman. A soul tilt is then added by singer and instrumentalist Omar.
Lyrically the album focuses on relationships, particularly those that are disaffected and tumultuous which really comes to a head on the dark, bassy throb of "Sugar Water (Look at My Face)" as she vents her anguish at having been messed around and damaged in some way by her man. A couple of songs some that may already be familiar with some are the inclusion of "Milk and Honey" that originally appeared on ‘Survival of the Fattest’ and was something of a small hit that brought both of them to wider attention after its use on the US television show Grey’s Anatomy. and single . "That Very Night" which appeared as a dub on last years Prince Fatty release ‘Supersize’.
Despite the sombreness of some of the lyrics there is something that is very enjoyable about Miss Cook’s slant on life and this blend of "tropical pop"; as the label calls it should appeal to many.