Monday, 30 June 2008

prowling the dust- Cut Copy- In Ghost Colours (Modular)

Cut. Copy. Paste? If any glue is being used here, it's 80s neon, sticking the beats together into nostalgic bliss like Lego blocks built into a model of a square edged disco. Hype hype hyped on the blog assembly line, do Cut Copy have the songs?

The opener, 'Feel The Love' seems to suggest so, as it opens the album with a summer shimmy, doing a robot dance off your speakers as it jives around the dance floor. Keyboards plant butterfly kisses, little flourishes in the background as the vocals get ever more treated. 'Out There On The Ice' has sampled 'do do dos', as singer Dan Whitford does his best to do his ultimate Depeche Mode impression.

A hitch is soon hit, however, with 'Unforgettable Season', with vocals so like Johnny Borrell that the twat meter on my hi-fi broke. The mid paced track parambles round your ears going nowhere fast.

'So Haunted' marks the first proper appearance of guitars, as rare a sighting as a jackalope in this territory. The computers have largely taken over, destroying all things wood and string as best they can. Circuit boards reign supreme in this kingdom.

If you like your mid 90s trance in its worst excess, then check out 'Hearts on Fire', a track you just know Judge Jules thinks is 'banging' or an 'anthem' or some other filthy DJ word. It has even got that shimmering synth sound so that it sounds good when you're gurning around on E. Ick.

The quality is quickly brought back up with 'Far Away', channeling the melodies of great pop music with churning keyboards, funneling it all back into majestic dance music. 'Strangers In The Wind' brings to mind Hot Chip, just without the wry lyrics, the fault of inferior tribute that runs through this album. It might be good, but it ain't LCD Soundsystem. The influences have taken over that bit too much. Although 'Nobody Lost, Nobody Found' gets pretty close to overcoming the metaphorical hurdle.

This, the second album from Cut Copy, has a blueprint for great dance music stuffed into its back pocket, and shoves it in your face at will. Sadly, it just doesn't do it often enough. The computer overtones of the band name are reflected in the music, the record a cold blooded dance machine, its metal heart solely designed to get your body moving. Unfortunately, this lack of humanity leads the album to sometimes simply meander into synth burbles and generic dance clichés, its influences weighing it down like lead boots.


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