By Icy Demons
Contrary to the band and album title, this Chicago based collective's third record is far from a cold and wintry affair. Released on Leeds based label Leaf, Miami Ice isn't too far away from the warm ethnic stylings of recent offerings from the likes of the Ruby Suns and Blk Jks.
A combination of quirky pop, krautrock, jazz and afro-beat, the fusion of genres isn't actually Icy Demons' most pleasing feature; the band's most impressive traits arrive with the complex rhythmic textures, playful experimentation and the overall sense of aptitude within the structures.
For all the accomplished musicianship, there are several minor gripes. First, is the lack of true pop hooks (though there is still a degree of accessibility), and secondly, you can't help but feel some of the songs are incomplete. With that in mind, it's difficult to pick highlights, though the rigid synth lead and summery vocals in the wonderful title track definitely deserves a mention.
Miami Ice is a strange album; points are scored for the good-natured fun and clever drum/percussion arrangements, though sadly, not many of the songs on show are really worthy of repeated listens.