Saturday, April 12, 2008

II: Cut Copy's In Ghost Colours

This review appears in Washington Square News.

The second album from the Australian trio Cut Copy, In Ghost Colours is a nostalgic blend of electronica that is simultaneously retro and futuristic. This combination seems inevitable, as DFA maestro Tim Goldsworthy produced the record and singer Dan Whitford is a graphic designer and DJ. If those credentials aren't enough to elevate the release over its dance-punk ilk, the songs of "Colours" can certainly speak for themselves.

Though it appears to be just dance music on the surface, the album has substantial emotional depth. Whitford's vocals quaver with romanticism, and the instruments shimmer with uncertainty. The first single, "Lights and Music," demonstrates this appealing combination with its lyrical longing and melancholy synth flourishes. It is far more interesting than sugary pop songs but still catchy enough to inspire dancing. The sadness only seems too profound when things become shaky, as on the vaguely gothic "So Haunted."

Cut Copy has done an excellent job of avoiding the tired keyboard rock of the last few years, creating an album that is both accessible and ambitious. It isn't the most adventurous foray into the genre, but it's an enjoyable one. With this album, Cut Copy has made a name for themselves in an unlikely but fitting musical avenue: sophisticated synth-pop.


Cut Copy plays at the Bowery Ballroom on May 14th.

MP3: Cut Copy - Lights and Music
MP3: Cut Copy - Feel The Love
MySpace: Cut Copy
Official Site: Cut Copy

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