Dream A Garden is more than a piece of advice, it is also a description of the album itself: with airy vocals and dreamy synthesized accompaniments, it sounds like Jam City is dreaming a beautiful nocturnal garden packed with lights. Pretty and elusive, this follow-up to Classical Curves is hard to describe, but not hard to enjoy.
7/10 Clinton Staff review, 20 March 2015
5/5 in the Guardian this morning plus a recommendation from a trusted friend is putting big pressure on this release. So I sit here with arms folded with the words ‘impress me’ creeping across my lips.
Jam City makes modernist pop songs - every single note it slathered with an effect of some sort creating a scrambled claustrophobic environment for his poppy vocals to sit atop. The beats he uses are heavy industrial type clangings which makes a change from the lite-step beats used in much of todays post weep-step. I’m not connecting emotionally with the album until the post Mount Kimbie swirling synth of ‘Good Lads, Bad Lads’ which forgoes all beats and vox in lieu of haunting dislocated atmospheres. The Jam City sound (if there were one) is best exemplified in ‘Today’ this is where thumping squelshy beats hold firm beneath Prefab Sprout guitar chords and Scritti-esque funk guitar. Its like 80’s white boy soul crossed with post dubstep.
The album is a little too stop start for me and emphasis seems to have been placed on clever production touches rather than stellar songwriting so I’m sitting on the fence with a 7 at time of press and if it reveals more on further spins I’ll come back to ya, ok? Certainly an original and vibrant concoction.
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- Dream A Garden by Jam City
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