Those who remember Green Gartside for high-cheek-boned synth-pop and tongue-twisted falsetto wordplay (most notably on 1985's "Cupid and Psyche") may stumble over this, Scritti Politti's first offering in 12 years. In the time since Gartside first dripped his smart-ass honey atop prefab breakbeats and acid jazz, the syncopated rhyme game has been refined by the hip-hop world.But Gartside has been paying attention.
The single "Tinseltown to the Boogiedown" is essentially a hip-hop bravado sendup. Gartside is more himself on the uncharacteristically sparse "First Goodbye," a saccharine-sweet ballad that trickles more than it drips. "Die Alone" finds Gargside self-harmonizing, employing a Princely layered monotone to pull it all together. This is a peculiar and uniquely beautiful R&B experience, and a surprising comeback for a long-forgotten pop star.