Perfect Pitchfork-ready indie dreaming here from Madeline Kenney who has had her latest produced by Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak. She's previously been compared with Liz Phair and has worked extensively with Chaz Bear (Toro Y Moi). She's also getting ready to tour the UK and Europe just as soon as that 7.6 score comes in.
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After her rather lovely self produced debut Night Night at the First Landing, Madeline Kenney steps up the ante making a posher but more boring follow up produced by Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak. As with all second albums that follow the tried and tested route to success, this sandpapers off the interesting components of the debut, leaving well scrubbed electronic pop that could be anyone. The only notable sound here is Kenney's voice which is as soft as a duvet. It's quite a beautiful thing, gliding on top of the music like a piece of lace.
The album gets more daring as it goes on - Cut Me Off experiments in Tuneyards style electro funk and No Weekend employs a saxophone to provide an element of realness amongst the synthetic production. Her last LP had elements of the Durutti Column in it's guitar textures and finally, finally Kenney breaks out the guitar for Know and the whole record moves up a level. The track has a Cocteau Twins vibe with exquisite guitar - whose idea was it to keep it muted until track 5?
It's a shame Kenney doesn't bring more of herself into her music. The result could be spectacular rather than just pleasant. The record is saved her voice which is both innovative and soft on the ear. On The Flavour of a Fruit Tree she emerges with something pretty great as the record finally blends all her elements together in time for a memorable chorus.
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