This psych-pop album is neither particularly psychedelic nor particularly poppy, instead preferring fairly unimaginative composition and over-reliance on production.
I mean, there’s nothing /wrong/ with it. The band members are objectively skilled musicians, who play clearly and effectively together. There’s a pleasant, pervasive, oozing harmony that takes talent to pull off through the whole runtime. Harp arpeggios are performed with a wonderful flourish, and the bassline is marked by crisp technicality. Where the album leaves much to be desired is the dreadful composition. No risks are taken over the band’s earlier repetoire: compare the wonderful syncopation of “Joesph Carnell” to /any/ of the plodding hat-hat-hat-snare recycled OVER THE ENTIRE RUNTIME OF THIS FUCKING ALBUM.
“Good for dinner parties, or if you’re too high to care that the whole thing sounds the same.”
The music lacks compelling emotional connection, favoring production tricks and “ooh look at me I’m so creative” melodic licks over any serious attempt to compose music with emotional oomph. This renders the album hard to connect to, an intricate work of musicianship that I care about less passionately than imagist poetry, and I am not a poet.
Good for dinner parties, or if you’re too high to care that the whole thing sounds the same.
Artist: The Clientele Label: Merge Records Top Tracks: The Circus, Everything You See Tonight Is Different From Itself. For Fans Of: The Verve, The Horrors. 47 minutes.