• AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Jamiroquai's volume in the influences series Late Night Tales dovetails nicely with the loose-groove party funk Jay Kay and co. have made a specialty since debuting on England's acid jazz scene in 1992. Spanning the twin towers of late-'70s R&B -- disco and quiet storm -- the mix includes plenty of sexed-up R&B from Leon Ware ("What's Your Name"), Rufus & Chaka Khan ("Once You Get Started"), Kleeer ("Tonight's the Night"), and Skyy ("Here's to You," an unexpected gem). Still, having much to prove to jaded music fans and facing a steadily shrinking pile of rare grooves thanks to mixes like these, Jay Kay doesn't succeed in creating a truly diverting mix. Late Night Tales functions best as slinky background music to introduce a night out, or as a time capsule of pleasant yet mostly unimportant period music. Kay gives the compilation much-needed character, though, with a pair of changeups: a Liverpool band named the Real Thing, whose "Raining Through My Sunshine" was a personal favorite, and the underrated José Feliciano, whose "California Dreaming" is the track closest in vocal performance to Kay himself (alas, Stevie Wonder is nowhere to be found here).

blue highlight denotes track pick