Prolonged delusions of celebrity grandeur and a few too many stays in rehab have clearly upset London reggae space cadet Finley Quaye's fragile creative balance.
Quaye's Maverick A Strike seemed to come out of nowhere, mixing Lee Perry-inspired dub lunacy with coherent songs and a willingness to experiment freely. It made the singer very famous and apparently knocked him clean off the rails. It's no shocker, then, that Vanguard has none of the sense of surprise and casual brilliance of its predecessor. Things start out strong with another hiccuping, kalimba-laced roots stomper, but then completely dissolve into free-floating reggae-lite and misplaced rockers, and where Quaye's nonsensical babbling before sounded inspired, now he just sounds lost.