Katy B 'Honey' Review

Jimmy Coultas reports on the Katy B dance pop formula getting a glossy new update.

Jimmy Coultas

Date published: 22nd Apr 2016

If there's one woman who has dominated the poppier side of dance music this decade its been Katy B. Her debut On a Mission dropped on April Fools Day 2011, but she'd been bubbling under for a while previous to that, capturing the momentum of the Rinse FM led immersion of bass music on the charts perfectly.

Since then she hasn't looked back, and third album Honey has been building up for the most part of year with a drip feed of anthem after anthem. The Four Tet and Floating Points collab 'Calm Down' came first in December and was utterly unreal, as was the title track produced with Kaytranada.

And whilst we weren't initially that impressed with her Major Lazer produced duet with last decade's revitalised don Craig David 'Who am I', it's since grown on us and dominated the airwaves - leaving Honey in perfect position to soundtrack the summer of 2016.

The result is classic Katy B. 'So Far Away' teams up with D&B royalty Wilkinson and Stamina MC for a steel drum-led festival anthem, 'Lose Your Head' a sassy team up with grime starlets The HeavyTrackerz, J Hus and D Double E. Elsewhere Chris Lorenzo and Hannah Wants' sound of now house propels 'I Wanna Be' and 'Dreamer's respectively into the territory we know her best - singing about love over a banging beat.

To these ears though where she works best is when she gets to grips with some more forward thinking sounds. The aforementioned previously released efforts are still high points, but they're joined by the shimmering synths that underpin her duet with Sasha Keable on 'Chase Me' and 'Heavy' which benefits from a killer beat from Planet Mu's Mr Mitch.

Overall this feels a classier, more mature Katy - Kate Simko's orchestration influence exemplifies this on effort she produces alongside Jamie Jones 'Dark Deleirum'. She's still resolutely on the dancefloor though, and that's exactly where we want her to be.

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