don't you tell me how i feel.

put on a bib(io) by v
April 13, 2011, 12:16 pm
Filed under: electronic, New music, Shit I Like

I was introduced to Bibio (aka England-based Stephen Wilkinson) in 2009 via the unassailable Ambivalence Avenue, so I greeted the arrival of his new album, Mind Bokeh, with great hopes of another chill electronic record for lazy afternoons.

A friend commented that Mind Bokeh is a bit on the bloated side, whereas Avenue had no real fat to speak of — each song came and went without overstaying its welcome. “Excuses,” the opening track on the new record, has a hell of a slow build, and a few songs clock in near the six-minute mark. I maintain that I do have an attention span. I’m just saying, it seems like there’s a bit of throat-clearing going on here.

However, there is much to love on Mind Bokeh, even if the best bits aren’t strung together seamlessly. The talk-boxy “Anything New” is fresh and lemonadey, if lemonade could play bells and wind instruments. One of the things I love about Bibio is how the music ever so deftly toes the line of elevator music (see “Feminine Eye”).

But then you have “Take Off Your Shirt” (huh-huh) which is a jarring, weirdly generic rock song that threw me completely for a loop, and “Light Seep” (not SLEEP, despite what the YouTuber above believes), a slowed-down reworking of Ambivalence Avenue’s “Jealous of Roses.” My assessment: I don’t think Mind Bokeh really hangs together, but I predict I will hear this all damn summer long regardless (though I’ll likely skip “Take Off Your Shirt”). Sometimes an album is just a collection of songs. And that’s okay.

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