Omar – “The Man” (Album Review)

Omar – “The Man” (Album Review)

After a seven year hiatus between albums, UK soul singer/song writer and instrumentalist, Omar Lye Fook is back with his latest record, “The Man”.  Released in the UK on June 21, 2013, The Man is a very organic album boasting 13 tracks.  If you are familiar with his earlier work, you will not be disappointed in this deftly crafted compilation.  In true Omar fashion, the blend of Soul, Jazz, World Beat and Latin vibes are woven into an aural canvas on which he paints his lyrical masterpieces.  The title track, “The Man” has been in rotation for most of his fans since it’s release in April as an EP and illustrates of the growth a man experiences when he finds true love; the growth from “the man” to “THE MAN”…

Continuing his non-violence message in the song “Bully” featuring his brother, Scratch Professor, Omar gives us a vibe reminiscent of an old school reggae skankin’ chune, with horn samples scratched by Scratch Professor.
Omar continues to express love in many different ways on this album with such songs as “Treat You” ft. Caron Wheeler, a salsa-like duet discussing the future of a relationship; while “I Love being With You” is a Bossa Nova based song that expresses the male sentiments and compromises to quash arguments and keep his woman.

3 o’clock in the Mornin’! Where could you be? You said you come around, but I still don’t see… Maybe somethings not right. Why You be gone all night? The sex is dingling, you must be minglin’ ” – “High Heels” (Omar, 2013).  This is a funky Jazz joint, laced with a sax that mimics the emotions of the lyrics. Then there’s “When We Touch” which is an energetic soca meets house cut complete with a synthesized steel pan in the cast of instruments. This track is sure to get you deh… deh… dancing!

After 28 years (Mr. Postman and Determination were released in 1985) of providing us with great music, and now his seventh album, Omar has surely proven his longevity and his ability to be… The Man.

* The Man is available on the US market for pre-order & is expected to be available for download on June 25th, 2013 on iTunes and Amazon. *

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  • Futurejams

    This is DEFINITELY one of my fav albums of the year so far, right up there (for me) with Peven Everett’s “King of Hearts”.

    I suppose it’s no surprise that these guys are my favs since (to me) they share many similarities I like and admire: both are heavily influenced by Latin beats and transform them into danceable and likeable contemporary soul/rnb/house/soca grooves; both rely almost solely on their own measured male vocal ability (rather than vocal pyrotechnics) to drive their individual sounds to fruition; both men are super-talented multi-instrumentalists who give killer live shows; both take risks with genres (notice the prominent Asian-influenced piano chords delivered over a slow Samba beat maintained by the drums on “I Love Being With You”) and egos (Peven’s brash yet appropriate statement: “One Artist; Many Styles” on “King of Hearts”).

    However, I was initially skeptical about Omar’s latest when I read the tracklist. “The Man” had been circulating for a long while and thanks to BamaLoveSoul, I got to hear “When We Touch” and “High Heels” ages ago. And how DARE he re-touch that classic “There’s Nothing Like This?!” LOL But even though I know these tracks back-to-front, I must admit, I love to hear them more now that they are not isolated sounds but part of a whole, consistent groove. Omar may have made me wait for this album, but “The Man” was right on time, and so was “The Man’s” accomplice, “The King of Hearts” (US version)

  • DJ Phaze

    Thanks for commenting. I agree both artists take risks by crossing genres and utilizing a greater range of instrumentation (digital or live). I have not gotten to Peven’s album as yet to listen. I think Omar has a soft spot for “There’s Nothing Like This” and frankly it’s a superb song which lends to variations of interpretation. There are 3 other versions of that song available on a 12 inch released in 1995. I have also listened to all 7 versions of the single, “The Man” and the thing about Omar’s music is that is sparks creativity in other singers and instrumentalist; giving way to collaborations and remixes. The bottom line is that old songs are given a breath of new life, contemporary relevance and more spins.

  • The Gentleman

    Luscious soul rappin’!
    Can anyone tell me the type/name of clothing top he’s wearing in the album cover?

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