Jamiroquai Drops 'Automaton' Video, Album Due March 31

Jamiroquai 'Automaton'
Courtesy Photo

Jamiroquai 'Automaton'

British funkster Jamiroquai is officially back. After teasing a return following a nearly six year layoff, Jay Kay dropped the "Automaton" video on Friday (Jan. 27) and announced that the accompanying album is due March 31. 

Opening with scenes of nuclear bomb mushroom clouds and an army of Jay Kay's in glowing futuristic helmets, the dark video for the futuristic track pulses with the instantly recognizable Jamiroquai dance funk, splashed with a bit of Daft Punk robot rock groove. "All this love I felt for you/ Has gone away to another place (It's a digital life)/ I put my faith in a digital world," Jay Kay sings as his cybernetic character explores a bombed-out world that appears to have been destroyed by an atomic bomb.

The science fiction-inspired visual was directed by Charlie Lightening (Arcade Fire, Bjork) with Jay Kay offering up some creative direction, according to a release accompanying the clip for the first single from the group's upcoming eighth album.

“The inspiration for ‘Automaton’ is in recognition of the rise of artificial intelligence and technology in our world today and how we as humans are beginning to forget the more pleasant, simple and eloquent things in life and in our environment including our relationship with one another as human beings,” Jay Kay says of the new record in a statement.

The singer even busts a bit of a rhyme toward the end of the track, rapping, "Hey, you got me down underground/ Gettin' holed up in my cyberlounge/ As if I had time to break that down (Automaton)/ Whatever you can do I can override it" in a style that recalls the Afrika Bambaataa planet rocking grooves of the early 1980s. 


The smooth-dancing British act unleashed a string of hits in the 90s and early 2000s and won a Grammy before going into a hibernation, that broke last week with the release of a 22-second teaser called “Automaton Transmission 001." While huge in England and Europe thanks to his eye-catching videos and dancefloor-ready hits, Jamiroquai had more moderate success in the U.S., landing three albums on the Billboard 200, reaching a career high of No. 28 for 1999’s Synkronized. The group enjoyed four No. 1 albums in the UK (1993’s Emergency on Planet Earth, 2001’s A Funk OdysseySynkronized, and 2006’s High Times hits compilation) and topped the U.K. singles chart on one occasion, with 1998’s "Deeper Underground." Jamiroquai's seventh and most recent album release, Rock Dust Light Star, had a lukewarm reception on its release in 2010.