The Phenomenal Handclap Band - Baby

The Phenomenal Handclap Band are a collection of eight musicians and artists from Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn. ‘Baby’ begins strongly enough, playing out like the creation of Mark Ronson’s interesting cousin. As soon as the soulful vocals arrive, the aggressive brass hits that made the beginning so enjoyable are abruptly ejected to be replaced with shallow guitar work. The often grating vocals don’t do much to lift the mood either.

Half the time, ‘Baby’ sounds like a theme from a television show that no one can quite remember and the remaining half is spent stumbling about the place as soon as the song manages to touch upon some soulful substance. It’s a song best equipped for when you’re doing something else and your full attention isn’t really devoted to it. It could fit in quite well at a summer party where mindless chatter dulls the repetitive annoyance of it all.

There are some redeeming features however, The Phenomenal Handclap Band manage to marry together elements of funk and soul, which should by all rights be pretty disastrous, but they achieve the desired results with varying levels of competency. The most reassuring thing about ‘Baby’ is when it fades out; it is at this point it inspires the highest levels of appreciation.