No.9. Nearly God - Tricky
Tricky is quoted as saying Nearly God consists of incomplete demos of material left over from the Maxinquaye (his previous album) sessions. I'm not sure what plans he had for their completion but I doubt very much he could have improved on the overall claustrophobic, ominous atmosphere. Rather than the songs themselves (if they can be ever termed such) Nearly God's strength lies in the paucity and nerviness of the arrangements. It would make fabulous background music to a horror movie. The beats are genuinely menacing and portentous. They feel dirty and contaminated as if the studio equipment they've been recorded on has been lying in a festering cellar for decades. It's an odd album, as it plays more as a mood piece than anything resembling pop (which it absolutely is not), but is almost always completely engrossing; its hard not to get sucked into these long and mysterious haunts. Few album's I know of, if any, really sound like Nearly God, and that's a good thing since I see few artists being able to pull it off. This music is for close and quiet listening and requires a lot from the listener to get the most out of it. Tricky falls on his face a few times, and comes up just short a few more, but many of these "demos" sound completely unique and offer a mood that's really unrivaled in terms of dark atmosphere. I'm sure Nearly God will be freaking folks out for years, since Maxinquaye will rightful inspire curiosity in listeners, ands that's a great thing, the album's at it's best when it's freaking the crap out of you.
I absolutely love this album, it's in my top 5 of all time. have a listen -or a few- and see if it's in yours too.