Sony – 2001 – 48 minutes

Jay Kay is living the dream. His country mansion houses a collection of high performance sports cars, he goes out with blonde bombshells, and his albums sell by the bucketload. Not bad for someone who should really be the resident Stevie Wonder tribute act in the Dragon and Bucket, Neasden.

The fact is that Jamiroquai's fans are just like Jay himself – sales rep types who day-dream about the firm feel of a Ferrari's leather steering wheel, and Denise Van Outen in the passenger seat. When they are in a sophisticated mood they reach for Desiree, when they feel romantic, it's on with Celine Dion, and most of all, when they feel funky, Jamiroquai get a turn on the car stereo.

In fairness, 'A Funk Odyssey' is not a bad record. Mr Kay can carry a tune, and his band of seasoned professionals make a passable enough racket in the background. On this album he even tries his hand at a few new directions; eighties synth bass gives 'Feel So Good' a sawtooth edge, 'Twenty Zero One' shows his up-to-the-minute street cred by ripping off er....the Prodigy and he takes a trip into samba on 'Picture Of My Life'.

It's a pity it is so woefully uninspired. 'A Funk Odyssey' will see Jamiroquai stay just where they are – in the car-boot CD changer of the schoolmate who tells you just how much money he earns every time you meet him.

Luke McManus

Tracklisting: Feel So good - Little L - You Give Me Something - Corner Of The Earth - Love Foolosophy - Stop Don't Panic - Black Crow - Main Vein - Twenty Zero One - Picture of My Life