After three years of being commercial kings and queens, Caroline Polachek and Patrick Wimberly, the duo that make up Chairlift, now find themselves with an addiction to synth. Unlike others with the problem who stumble trying to find that perfect sound to wash over you, the Brooklyn duo have created a special LP with Something. They still try to capture the essence of 80s’ chart-toppers, but there’s no clear vision of being popular. The first single, “Amanaemonesia”, is a psychological concept piece that’s too clever for five minutes to be an actual single. In fact, most of the album seems as if Polacheck and Wimberly fell into a deep depression and came out on other end with an intent to re-design the soundtrack for American Psycho and anything remotely similar in a kind, ominous way.
Some waves, where chilling vocals (“Sidewalk Safari”) and atypical percussion (“Wrong Opinion”, “Turning”) are the central point, curate too many flashbacks to another decade to stay relevant but when Something’s obscure creative jump crashes, it stings. The romance in “I Belong In Your Arms” and “Guilty As Charged” are indie pop adrenaline rushes and “Ghost Tonight” is a jazz session with Feist-like “oohs” and “woahs” that are voluptuously sharp. What’s better is Polachek has given Chairlift bravado. The new twist is sonically expansive with moments that smother instead of engage, but the vocalist has found this new ingenuity to let her words shimmer with more emphasis, placing real emotions behind textural arrangements that try to dress up as pop through melancholic dilemmas and technical wordplay, and the aftermath is a rabid craving.
Download: “Guilty As Charged”, “I Belong In Your Arms”
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