THE LATEST ALBUM RELEASES RATED AND REVIEWED
CARPENTERS Carpenters with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
THE Carpenters’ greatest pop masterpieces have been reimagined with Richard Carpenter conducting his own new arrangements along with his late sister Karen’s immortal vocals. Richard also acted as the album’s producer and arranger, and his involvement in every single piece is distinct.
There have been a swathe of RPO collaborations lately, including with Roy Orbison and The Beach Boys, but this one stands head and shoulders above the lot, thanks to the artist himself having a key role in the process.
THE 1975 A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships
THE 1975 have lost their ambient indie rock vibe that was the heart of their first album, shed the ridiculous over-the-top pop sound of their second, seemingly got everything that they needed to out of their system, and left something completely new in the embers.
The 1975 have obviously been experimenting, and as reflected in the title, the music and lyrics are heavily influenced by the digital age. They’re still the heavily atmospheric mash-up of pop and indie, but it is evident that they have altered their sound and played with new technology. However, the most striking thing about this is the lyrical content. Matty Healy is a truthful and astute songwriter. This album is big, honest and revolutionary, just like its subject matter.
CLEAN BANDIT What Is Love?
CLEAN Bandit have morphed into the UK’S dominant power in Latin-inspired pop hits. That worked well, with Rather Be , featuring Jess Glynne, spending four weeks at number one. But then their attentions turned to Latin pop and watered-down dancehall.
What Is Love? sees them follow this to its natural conclusion, and it’s not a road you will want to travel with them. Over 12 tracks, it becomes clear that songs which sounded perfectly serviceable as singles cloy when heard together. They reveal an approach that’s at best predictable, at worst formulaic.