6/10 Clinton Staff review, 30 September 2011
This appears on Sufjan Stevens Asthmatic Kitty imprint and is a multi choralled collaboration between Simon Lord and Rafter Roberts. Simon Lord was the vocalist in Simian the band that spawned Simian Mobile Disco who spawned James Ford who has produced just about everyone in the last few years. So its good to see what the other ones are up to - they have a distinctive almost Burundi sound with heavy pulsing drums and low end synth. Over this they sing like mad adding melodies and counter melodies all over the place and musically they throw in the kitchen sink as well as other items. The influence of Animal Collective in this kind of sonic soup can't be underestimated but I'll throw in a curveball - Adam and the Ants. A lot of this sounds like what may have happened if after 'Friend or Foe' Adam and Marco had followed their muse into less commercial territories rather than collaborating with Phil Collins and making appearances on Cannon and Ball. It's not completely uncommercial though - the melodies are at times quite obvious, 'Oblique' is a dead ringer for 'Suspicious Minds' and a lot of these tracks with sleeker production would head towards Boys to Men/X factor Saturday night hell. Yet production wise it does take note of the last madcap Sufjan Stevens record with its squelchy chaotic sound. What a funny old record.
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