Weekly Capsule Reviews: 25/06/2017

crackup

This week: Bad Breeding, Fleet Foxes, Beach Fossils, Lorde, Rag’n’Bone Man


Bad Breeding: Divide [La Vida Es Un Mus, 07/04/2017]

Even the most brutish of cacophonies needs a sinew of gloss from time to time. This is so badly engineered—more than produced—the sinew it’s devoid of is almost the essential component, actually. (7/10)


Fleet Foxes: Crack-Up [Nonesuch, 16/06/2017]

Hurtling back to wherever they feel their sound originated, like good little nostalgists, Robin Pecknold sings of nothing and more as he goes. But more than sometimes “nothing” is a joy—it creates a vacuum for your nature-et-al. musings to, forgive me, “come to life”. They’re candid in their own heads, psychotherapists to the crits, philosophers to the fans, and all of the above to the rest. (7/10)


Beach Fossils: Somersault [Bayonet, 02/06/2017]

These bookish types don’t sound enough like The Beach Boys riding a crest of a wave—potentially a good thing. I wouldn’t know if “They told the refugee/You know that nothing can be free” is directly from arts school or an economic theory. (6/10)


Lorde: Melodrama [Lava/Republic, 16/06/2017]

She’s daddy’s dream—sensible on a night out, self-restricted, waiting for that green light to go—he never has to worry. At twenty she’s melodramatic, sober or otherwise—no surprise—and if she thinks “Better on my own” is erudite for her youthful years, she might be right. (6/10)


Rag’n’Bone Man: Human [Columbia, 10/02/2017]

The human condition is most certainly not trite to this ersatz soul merchant. Rory Graham is a big softy with a vision to reinstate white-ballad soul to the masses by playing the self-effacing good guy, exactly what “Human” says. He’s done the underground slog and has now got his predictable chance. Sickly modest, understating its influences, and self-indulgent in all the places he thinks it isn’t. (4/10)


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