I first heard this album at a party, perhaps in the last year of my teenager-hood. It is all a bit fuzzy now, but back then I remember being exposed to this kind of thing for the very first time - as well as being actually open to listen. Having been drinking from the heavy metal cup for many years, and recently deciding that it simply wasn't enough, like a tea drinker trying coffee for a the first time since that awful cup of sleeve squeezings a few years ago, this time the serving was a lot more decent.
Music: Response, the first track of the album, builds with melodic frills and beats that drive us all the way home. The computerised notations and scored melodies whirl around like fairground rides, and the DJ-esque rhythm section plays around with drums and stereo tornadoes until close. The repetition of the line which is also the title of the song, albeit a little more fluffed out, compels us to focus our inner ears on what our auditory ears are receiving. We pay attention. Under the Influence spikes us with the number two track and it lays down the law that we are in fact now giving this album our undivided attention. And why not? It's really good.
Previous albums have been simply beat driven, and with minor key changes alone, this new second wave of material from the electronic music duo lends itself to more technical and yet more fluid realms of musical potency. Full use of the studio has made an album which not only has been produced by professional disk jockeys but mixed down and scored like musicians in a sound lab of gizmos and widgets that mould the music into strict and powerful amulets of sound, deep and fully explorable by the listener.
The fast pace of the album doesn't relent as track three speeds it up even more. Pounding bass drum backing makes the builds even more prominent as it is clear that we are supposed to be listening to this album at the highest volume our neighbours will tolerate. For the first time we are treated to some lyrics, Out of Control tends to lean towards to the more commercial element however it refuses to back down to when it comes to being what it is, a track on a Chemical Brothers album.
Orange Wedge sling shots us back into psychedelia as some fruity synths wobble over weird tribal loops formed of some very strange sounds, slowed down things included. Funky bass frames the sound in moments of clarity before more solos of rhythmic praise celebrate the freedom of this track, not an album filler by any stands but perhaps surely designed to link the previous lyrical number to the next. Noel Gallagher lends his voice to the sound to help deliver the master track of Let Forever Be. He sings about feelings, waiting, and ambition. Sunshine Underground gives us a new perspective on the angle of what this group are about when they pull out some fresh sounding plucked melodies and flutes. It's just a bit more like heaven than last time. We are treated to a seemingly everlasting dance around some extremely pretty beats and lifting sound effects, until a grand exit into a void of a moments pause.
Asleep from Day is a reassuring little ballad which drips like mayonnaise over the salad of hardcore uplift from previous moments. It isn't long before the pair are at their old tricks again and the vocals are sampled, thrown into some kind of feedback and a little burst of energy ends the tranquil atmosphere. As the wave crashes, we sense the build of new currents a few meters away as once more the honey glazed vocals of Hope Sandaval glisten over the wash. Got Glint is similar to Orange Wedge in its feel but it carries us on a different wind, perhaps a more Easterly breeze, our journey takes us into some pompous and gusty moments of bass driven funkadelic simplicity.
Hey Boy Hey Girl is another song made with the radio in mind, as it contains some catchy pieces, designed to draw us in and sing when in the shower. The ear worm is definitely present in there. Surrender, being the title track and second to last track also, grants us the wishes we wanted when putting our money into an album by the group. That original sunshine sound is sprung from the box as a lid is opened and the old sensations of what this music is all about are released into the atmosphere. The opening numbers had it, it fizzled away into 'modernity' and now they've pulled it back into play as the album is destined to come to an end. Dream On does this very thing, as proud owner of closing track position, it fulfils its duty perfectly.