De Phazz Daily Lama

De-Phazz was last heard in a "best of” collection Beyond Lounge which catalogued their repertoire of sounds slipping somewhere between acid jazz, lounge and almost infectious pop. The Heidelberg mastermind behind the group Pit Baumgartner once again maintains the role of producer. Utilising the ample opportunities afforded by a trans-national exchange of sounds, he sent sketches of song ideas to his compatriots Otto Engelhardt and Joo Kraus as well as gorgeous vocalists Pat Appleton, Barbara Lahr and Karl Frierson. Sending sound sketches back and forth led eventually to Daily Lama. Characteristic of this loose collective of musicians, one could use the genre terms lounge, jazz, bossa nova, dub, soul on De-Phazz and still vaguely miss the mark. It is in fact a surprisingly cohesive blend of all these possible directions. The opening track "Looks” successfully manages to marry bossa nova coolness with soulful tripping vocals. "You Stayed” is evocative, rather like Billie Holiday deciding to do trip-hop and "True North” is a slow-burning dub track. As such, nothing offends in Daily Lama because there is a little bit of everything if your locus of reference is down-tempo and the slow, smooth sounds of jazz and the passion of soul music. Baumgartner hasn’t ventured off the safe route. As such, it remains to be seen if he will break new ground. Daily Lama like De-Phazz’s previous albums, is continuing more of the same — albeit it is delightful lounge-jazz music. (Universal)