Saturday, October 2, 2010


An intriguing but ultimately lukewarm collaboration between Shin's front man James Mercer and uber-producer/studio wunderkind/Gnarls Barkley member Brian Burton a.k.a Dangermouse.

Dressing up Mercer's idiosyncratic but always accessible melodic pop sensibilities with all manner of Dangermouse's trademark gentle and inventive psychedelic textural splashes, this album goes down really easy.

Unfortunately, Dangermouse is also, among contemporary big name producers, the great emasculator. He has a tendency to cut the balls out of near everything he touches (compare Black Key's Attack & Release to their other works for a textbook example), and it really hurts here, especially in the album's long, snooze inducing middle section.

But in the end, the opening and closing two tracks and overall pleasing nature of the sonic design are just strong enough to boost this album up out of not recommend territory to a mild, just know if you check this one out that it almost functions better as background/elevator music than a foregrounded listen.

Status: Mild Recommend.

Cherry Pickers Best Bets: Vaporize, Trap Doors, Mongrel Heart, The Mall & Misery.

Component Breakdown:
1. The High Road - 7
2. Vaporize - 8
3. Your Head Is On Fire - 5
4. The Ghost Inside - 6
5. Sailing to Nowhere - 6
6. Trap Doors - 7
7. Citizen - 6
8. October - 6
9. Mongrel Heart - 8
10. The Mall & Misery - 8
Intangibles - Average

No comments: