What I'm obsessed with: "Loving in Stereo," the new album from the U.K. dance duo Jungle.
Who/what is Jungle?: Jungle is Josh Lloyd-Watson and Tom McFarland, a British songwriting and production duo whose 2014 self-titled debut album was shortlisted for the U.K.'s prestigious Mercury Prize. This puts the Jungle gents in the most-excellent company of FKA twigs, Foals and the Arctic Monkeys, as it should.
Why I'm obsessed: I stumbled upon Jungle last year, when I became transfixed by an eerily funky song playing in the background in an old "Halt and Catch Fire" episode. Shazam informed me that the song was 2014's "Lucky I Got What I Want" by Jungle. I didn't know anything about these guys, but after downloading the "Jungle" album and its 2018 follow-up, "For Ever," Jungle's blend of soothing chill vibes and warm, bubbling soul became the exact sound I needed to hear. Had to hear. Every day. When Jungle announced that a new album was due in August of 2021, I was terrified that it would disappoint me. It did not.
What's to love about "Loving in Stereo"?: Good vibrations! Everywhere! Much of this album was created and recorded during England's lockdown, but like Dua Lipa's "Future Nostalgia," Jungle's "quarantine album" is all about escape, celebration and bopping your worries away. Whether you like your grooves fast and furious (the guitar-powered "Truth"), taut and sexy ("Talk About It") or Kool-and-the-Gang smooth ("Lifting You"), "Loving in Stereo" is a non-stop positivity party.
The dance doctors will see you now: When the swanky "Keep Moving" and and the turbo-charged "Talk About It" surfaced a few months ago, this crazy-happy album seemed poised to be the soundtrack of Jailbreak Summer 2021. Life didn't exactly work out that way, but thanks to "Loving in Stereo," we know that our dance floors are wherever we need them to be.
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