- About ten years ago, Scottish indie miserabilists Arab Strap released a brilliant album entitled ‘Philophobia’: fear of love. It was the perfect soundtrack for the life of all bruised hearts wrapped in cum-stained bed sheets out there, and Aidan Moffat’s tales of passive-aggressive love and confusing/confused exes somehow struck a nerve. This month, Brazilian architect (!) and all-around hottie Gui Boratto is also aiming at our darkest neurosis with an album for Kompakt about the fear of colors: ‘Chromophobia’. Thankfully, this is a definitely more upbeat affair, and Boratto’s first long player should finally convince reclusive phobics and emotional loners to get out a little more, because it is quite starry-eyed in essence and probably one of early 2007 landmarks in terms of electronic LPs.
If you are already familiar with Boratto’s production style (the ‘Arquipélago’ or ‘Gate 7’ twelve inches on Kompakt, his recent haunting remix of Eyerer & Chopstick’s ‘Haunting’), you kinda know what to expect, but ‘Chromophobia’ sure isn’t monochromatic. It is, in fact, quite kaleidoscopic in terms of moods, tempos, and themes: ‘Terminal’ is an upbeat and joyful affair while the aforementioned ‘Gate 7’ verges on the hypnotic side of minimal; ‘Shebang’ (sadly, not a Ricky Martin cover) flirts with schaffel sleaziness, while ‘Hera’ could easily be a new Aril Brikha-penned track and ‘Acrostico’ a Boards of Canada-esque IDM mini hymn. That said, the best moment on here by far sure is the appropriately-titled, life-affirming ‘Beautiful Life’, written with and sung by Boratto’s wife Luciana Villanova, a track so immediately engaging, with a sheer sense of quiet exhilaration running through its full eight minutes and thirty seconds, it could easily be mistaken for an accomplished Jacques Lu Cont-produced anthem, or even one of his recent Madonna remixes (i.e. Triola it ain’t).
Yet, these numerous reference points are no sign of mundanity since all thirteen tracks are filled with imaginative and clever hooks satisfying enough for techno boffins and home-listening dilettantes alike.
In other words: please fear not, because ‘Chromophobia’ is really, really easy to love.
02 Mr Decay
04 Gate 7
07 The Blessing
08 Mala Strana
11 Beautiful Life
13 The Verdict