RECIPE FOR GREAT­NESS

Exclaim! - - POP ROCKS - MATT BOBKIN

AI­DAN KNIGHT Each Other

On Twit­ter, Ai­dan Knight writes of­ten and fondly about food, so it’s fit­ting that his third LP, Each Other, fea­tures serv­ing in­struc­tions in the liner notes: “To achieve the great­est qual­ity, please en­joy th­ese record­ings on your home stereo sys­tem or stereo head­phones.” Heed his ad­vice: Each Other is del­i­cate, in­tri­cate, and best en­joyed with a bit of care to do jus­tice to its metic­u­lous as­sem­bly. This care­ful craft­ing doesn’t come at the ex­pense of raw emo­tion. Knight’s lyrics looked in­ward on 2012’s Small Re­veal, but this fol­lowup fo­cuses on con­nect­ing with oth­ers — friends, lovers, fam­ily — while also stream­lin­ing his sound, trad­ing in Small Re­veal’s am­bling or­ches­tral pas­sages for tightly- wound rock taste­fully tex­tured with smoky keys and punchy trum­pets. Though the postrock roots Knight dis­played on de­but LP Ver­si­colour aren’t as ap­par­ent here, the al­bum it­self takes on the genre’s “quiet-loud-quiet” for­mat, clus­ter­ing all its warm, open-armed an­thems into the middle while us­ing the darker tracks to grab the lis­tener at the be­gin­ning and ease them out at the end. A ver­i­ta­ble three- course meal, Knight’s re­fined palate and keen at­ten­tion to de­tail make Each Other a well-paced, flavour­ful ex­pe­ri­ence that ends too soon, but lingers long after­ward. (Out­side Mu­sic)

WHAT COMES FIRST, THE MU­SIC OR THE LYRICS?

I call my­self an “ar­ranger-song­writer” be­cause a lot of the time, I’m work­ing on the mu­sic and then I need to fit the words into it, so that was one thing that was re­ally sim­i­lar this time to the last record­ing. I do this thing that freaks ev­ery­one out around me — go­ing into the stu­dio with half-fin­ished songs. It’s not fi­nan­cially very smart, but I like to keep my­self on my toes.

WHAT’S THE BIG­GEST DIF­FER­ENCE BE­TWEEN THIS RECORD AND YOUR PRE­VI­OUS ONES?

I spent enough time and picked up enough ex­pe­ri­ence to make some­thing that is nat­u­rally bet­ter than what I’ve done be­fore. I trav­elled more, I’ve picked up more things about my­self and also picked up more things about the peo­ple that I love and care for and also the peo­ple that I don’t care for, and have been able to turn those into songs that are more di­rect than what I’ve done be­fore. They’re not as hard to grasp as some of the things I was try­ing to do. And some of the things I’m re­ally fond of off the other record­ings, but I also like the im­me­di­acy of some of th­ese songs. They’re just a lit­tle bit more di­rect and fo­cused.

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