Here's a new album from Stereolab vixen Laetitia Sadier’s which was recorded in Switzerland with a man called David who has lots of keyboards. In fact Its a truly international record with the drummer recording his parts in Paris, the bassist in Valencia and the strings done in St Etienne. Sadier's own parts were overdubbed in London and the triangle on the title track was laid down in Swanage.
The album is full of delicately textured production, twinkling nuances and shifting chords. A relaxing and invigorating record Sadier has carried on along the path of her parent band but brings a warmth and intimacy to her solo recordings. Bound to be popular this one.
8/10 Robin Staff review, 17 September 2014
Stereolab frontwoman Laetitia Sadier claims to have been inspired by Marxist philosopher Guy Debord on 'Something Shines', particularly his book, 'The Society of the Spectacle', which asks questions about the necessity of social hierarchy: "do the rich need the poor to be rich?", she asks during penultimate track "Oscuridad". The song itself is slighter than anything Sadier has written before, comprised of barely-strummed acoustic chords, occasional swirling riffs and slight ambience. While the lyrics feel as pointed as Debord's manifesto, and as scathing as his critical theory, the tune remains little more than a sketch -- a chilled out jam that doesn't make true on its furious politics. That sums up 'Something Shines'. It has an ominous premise, with Sadier's songwriting taking on its cerebral, most critical form (she sings of of transgressions, domination, "elegant astrophysicists"), while the atmosphere is instead conjured by soft bass notes, placating vocals and quietly placed handclaps.
The tunes on 'Something Shines' recall Stereolab in their least noisy and intrusive incarnation, making the kind of experimental rock that takes The Velvet Underground's "Sunday Morning" as its starting point - skeletal and weird, but avant-garde the way a seriously good cup of coffee is: like, can you believe it's this nice? Despite its odd additives and occasional sustained moments of true weirdness (such as the squeaky ambient wash at the end of "Quantum Soup", which descends into Flaming Lips-esque sound effect nonsense), 'Something Shines' is more like listening to Real Estate than the revolution. Sorry, Marx -- we just want to have a good time.
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- Something Shines by Laetitia Sadier
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