You reach a point in life where the question of how to stay at the top of your game looms; the only real solution being, you change the game. Our Love, the new album from Caribou, is the sound of Dan Snaith doing just that. Our Love is due October 6th on City Slang and is the sixth studio album from Caribou. The album features collaborations with Jessy Lanza and Owen Pallett. It was mixed by David Wrench and features artwork by Jason Evans/ Matthew Cooper.
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Caribou has had varied career since his early days trading under the Manitoba moniker. I remain the only person on earth still unconvinced by the ‘Swim’ album. In fact when I heard the promo, I stated loudly and to no-one in particular that his career was “over”. I’m open to the suggestion that I was possibly wrong about this.
Over our recent surprisingly warm summer, ‘Can’t Do Without You’ and the more recent ‘Our Love’ have blasted nicely out of digital radios everywhere but does this stand up as an album? ….Weeeelll yes there are some decent moments but it’s maybe not the universally killer record you might expect. Not all of it.
‘Can’t Do Without You’ is rightly placed in pole position and sounds great as always but if I was being picky I’d choose a longer mix as it seems to be over before it’s begun. ‘Silver’ is a nice floaty track with Dan Snaith’s falsetto vocals more in evidence, he’s definitely been listening to Arthur Russell and has seemingly spent some time drenching him in sunshine, further Russell influence can be seen in “All I Ever Need’ which is bleepy and balearic, really taking hold once the fattest of fat basslines come in. ‘Our Love’ again sounds great taken on it’s own terms but by this stage you start to wonder whether Snaith has anything in his locker but sweetly melodic sunshiney tech-house and sparse falsetto vocals. Owen Pallett guests on this track (and three others) and the shards of violin are a nice touch and exemplifies Snaith’s clever production touches which are notable throughout the album.
‘Second Chance’ is the first real departure from this signature sound with vocals by Jessy Lanza, its sweetly composed minimal r&b that is saved by pitch-shifted wobbly synths. Its remarkably under-produced with barely a beat to speak of but this mirrors the general feel of the album. In a time when people throw the kitchen sink at tracks (hi Fly-Lo), Snaith has generally laid off and let things breathe which *generally* works to his advantage. But as you work your way through the B side, things start to feel undercooked and you get that slightly malnourished feel.
Which pretty much sums the album up, its slickly made, hooky electronica that will find a wide audience, an enjoyable listen for sure but I'm finding that despite all this it still doesn’t wholly satisfy. Maybe I can't be satisfied?
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- Our Love by Caribou
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