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No Roots

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Album Review

Not that it was a valid argument before, but with the release of No Roots you can't say "every Faithless album sounds the same" any longer. The 15 tracks are broken into two suites — seven tracks each — with a remix of "Mass Destruction" tacked onto the end. Both suites focus on love: love of people, love of humanity, love of peace. There's plenty of conviction, plenty of message, and very little for the club. Headphone-friendly, the album is the best showcase yet for Rollo and Sister Bliss (the musical half of Faithless), as the music (all in the key of C by the way) is stunning. Polished and purposeful, the tunes glide one to the next effortlessly, making this the most thought-out Faithless album yet. Mood is the thing and as a result only a few tracks — "Mass Destruction," "I Want You More, Pt. 2," "Miss U Less, See U More" — stand out on their own. But if the album isn't as powerful as one would have hoped, it's very personal. It's a good move since everybody knows the band can churn out a fluffy banger like "Insomnia" anytime they want; now the band's zealous fans finally make sense to an outsider. The album is for the fans, and maybe newcomers with patience and a penchant for wandering introspection. New vocalist LSK's cool reggae toasting mixes well with Maxi Jazz's conversational style, and "You ain't going to nirvana — or far-vana" is the only lyric that'll cause cringes. More than a placeholder, No Roots is a satisfying album that's like the kid on the cover. It's lovable but requires attention and commitment.


Formed: 1995 in London, England

Genre: Dance

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

A prime house-pop group and consistent club act, Faithless is at its core a duo of producers Rollo and Sister Bliss. Before the group officially came together in 1995, Rollo had produced a club hit ("Don't You Want Me" as Felix in 1992), plus an album for Kristine W. and remixes for the Pet Shop Boys, Björk, and Simply Red. Sister Bliss, a piano and violin prodigy from the age of five, converted to acid house in 1987, and quickly became one of the U.K.'s best house DJs, also recording several singles...
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No Roots, Faithless
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