Contra opener “Horchata” displays a caliber of pop songcraft and melodic intuition that gives The Shins’ James Mercer a run for his harmony, and the feathery lightness of lead singer Ezra Koenig’s voice allows him to indulge fluttering melodies that would sink under the weight of more overbearing pipes.
Dream is a go-for-broke collection that not only creates and sustains a hi-fi drowse-pop drama throughout its 10 beguiling songs, but comes across like a logical and gorgeous extension of all the band’s previous dreams.
Though High Violet lacks the front-to-back consistency that made Boxer such an unmitigated revelation, the new album’s peaks absolutely rival Boxer’s best tracks.
Swelling at 16 songs and an hour-plus runtime, it’s Arcade Fire’s most ambitious and concept-driven effort to date.
In its many contradictions, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy—perhaps this century’s definitive portrait of torment, vanity, self-delusion, and pathos—has given way to stirring new possibilities.
This is an album that knocks you over at first. But when you gather yourself, get back on your feet and listen again, you’ll want to hit the play button a second time. Mumford & Sons have no reason on to apologize on Sigh No More—this is a killer debut.
Murphy and his crew are fully committed to this album. There’s a remarkable sustained energy to this collection; its electronic textures thrum and shimmy, and wall after sonic wall is built up and torn down with impeccable precision.