A few years ago at an All Tomorrow's Parties festival I caught Tricky, playing in a small upstairs bar venue, a decade and a half on from Maxinquaye, the debut album that made him a star and still largely defines him for most people, along with his work with Massive Attack. He was a wired and confrontational performer who ended the gig as I remember offstage, crawling all over the audience. Definitely a man who follows his own path.
A few years further on and his new album ununiform is just out, and though I imagine it won't get an enormous public profile, it should do, as it's an excellent record, utterly faithful to the man's special legacy. Brooding, paranoid and dark just as you'd expect but Art in the best sense possible in that it shines a light and explores mercilessly a certain aspect of the human condition
There are any number of collaborations with guest vocalists, including Martina Topley-Bird who made such an impression on Maxinquaye. In some respects this record recalls that one, though that's always an easy option to turn to when reviewing Tricky, But there's the same lush orchestration, a surprising, reinvented cover, (Hole's Doll Parts, here entitled simply Doll). and the same dark dance heartbeat at the core of everything. Recorded in Berlin, Tricky's new base and reflecting the internationalism of the man, Jamaica and Roma, and here Russian Gangster Rap. He's still writing soundtracks for films you don't need to see to experience.