Whomadewho - Dreams

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  • Danish disco-punks WhoMadeWho are one of Europe's most underrated bands. In the past ten years, they've amassed a back catalogue of emotional resonance and rare musical zip. Anchored by the dance floor nous of DJ, producer and drummer Tomas Barfod, the trio combine individual histories in jazz, classical and rock as well as electronic music to produce bittersweet indie-dance tracks of deceptive complexity. Yet, after two albums on Kompakt, here they are self-releasing their fifth album, Dreams, and rather than taking it as a given, I feel the need to make the case as to why you should care. A refinement of their sound rather than a radical reinvention, Dreams sees WhoMadeWho taking a step back from the dance floor, bringing to the fore the guitars and the polished, Phoenix-like sheen that has always been an element of their sound. If such airbrushed FM rock has a certain inherent wistfulness—a sense of youth as a fleeting freedom—WhoMadeWho distill that to a powerful concentrate, most notably on "Indian Summer," the synth-clad heartbreaker "Heads Above" and the ELO-tinged electro-pop of "Your Better Self." Dreams isn't flawless—the alt-folk ballad "United," for one, meanders a bit too much—but WhoMadeWho's best tracks are incredible. The Moroder-ish disco of "Hiding In Darkness" (written after a night in Berghain) is but a few tweaks from being a clubland anthem, while "The Morning" weaves Vampire Weekend's hi-life guitars, art-rock falsetto and an EDM-ish, emotional cloudburst of a chorus into a track that channels both transcendent joy and epic melancholy. It could destroy this summer's festivals, or at the very least, finally turn you onto WhoMadeWho.
  • Tracklist
      01. Dreams 02. Right Track 03. The Morning 04. Another Day 05. Traces 06. Heads Above 07. New Beginning 08. Indian Summer 09. Hiding In Darkness 10. Your Better Self 11. United