Austin, Texas based musician Bayonne creates hypnotic dream-pop which pushes together Philip Glass/Steve Reich trance inducing repetition and Joanna Newsom’s folk-pop balladry. Listen to Spectrolite a few times and you’ll pick out something different to love on each play. Happiness inducing stuff. And that ain’t bad.
9/10 Clinton Staff review, 31 October 2016
Review on post it note on front of CD: "Pretty Good" - Clint. Also read...."absolutely hands down the best album of the late summer/early autumn".
You need time to spare. Please do not listen to 30 second clips while tweeting. Once you start, you've gotta be in it for the long haul. First up: there's an intro that takes ages to get together while they get their voices untangled. Eventually some Phil Collins drums thump along to the dream like state as a loop starts to develop and things begin to make sense. Bayonne make a rich sort of music that sounds like Animal Collective collaborating with Philip Glass. We're almost six minutes into the record when we realise how they are going to sound. Scattershot vocal harmonies twist around each other over piano glissandos and busy percussion. Hang on a minute this is perfect. This is how I'd hoped Animal Collective would have followed up 'Merriweather Post Pavillion'. The album improves as it wears, 'Spectrolite' near damn nails the mix between Wild Beasts and Tortoise with skyscraping vocals veering into the ether, 'Marim' begins with Reich-ian vibraphone skittering about before delicious vocal harmonies that kind of recall Fleet Foxes sweep across the soundscape before we get to the moment we've all been waiting for.
'Steps' is the musical moment of my year so far. Unbelievable the looped melody recalls Andrew Gold's 'Never Let It Slip Away' and we know how much we all like that. Added to it are Eastern sounding Sakamoto like refrains and the vocals are just perfect and it just loops over and over and over and we can all finally die happy.
There's more good moments later but it feels at this moment I should stop my yakkin'.What a good album this is. Please consider purchase.
9/10 Paul Customer review, 7th November 2016
Great LP. First couple of tracks lead you into Roger's wonderful world of sound and then it just cruises at a high altitude from track 3 onwards, managing to get better as it progresses. From 'Spectralite' through to the bonus tracks the album soars! My favourite track is the entire LP in one listen.
Comes across on the first few listens like Mew's last LP, but with all the proggy noodles removed (and less guitars). It also (kinda) reminds me of Lazer Guided Melodies in it's wonderful instrumentation and glossy production, there's a classic feel running through which probably means it will sound just as good in 20 years time. I'm crap at comparisons, so I'll stop there..
It's emotionally ripe and probably a bit too much for some, but sometimes you've just got to open up and let it all in to reap the full rewards. There's a strong current of sincerity in the lyrics and music, you can tell it's been made to bring amount of pleasure to it's listener... This LP was originally released back in 2014, and I feel kinda cheated that it's taken me 2 years to discover it. Everything about this LP curls upwards, even the sad songs.
I'm a little concerned that my mum seems to like this LP just as much as I do. She's a Genesis/Collins fan and while I can't hear the Phil Collins influence, I've never listened to any of his records. We've all got our musical perversions, I know I do, so I'll presume the influence goes no further than liking loud drums. Mum says she likes it "'cos he's got a lovely voice and it makes her feel kinda sexy,". Which is probably a better summary than my own.
As Clinton says, consider buying this record. It's really rather pretty and darned near perfect to these tired ears.
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