doldrums

The second album from DIY synth warriors Doldrums takes its name from Henry Miller and its eclectic electronic sensibilities from fellow Montrealer Grimes. Otherwise, they’re out on their own. Main Doldrummer Airick Woodhead’s irreverence keeps the record interesting; opener ‘HOTFOOT’ is a jarring sensory assault, but keeps its focus with a savvy vocal melody, while the strident ‘Blow Away’ takes its unique lyrical cue from the moment domestic bliss becomes boredom (“You are the one I wanna watch TV with…”). The robovoiced dialogue in computer love glitchfest ‘My Friend Sinjen’, though? Maybe a goof too far.

Still, it’s the more low-key moments that really stand out – both side-closers (‘Video Hostage’ and ‘Closer 2 U’) may dabble in Field-esque looped microsamples, but Woodhead’s gorgeous way with a tune melts the electro-chill into hauntingly human puddles. It doesn’t all quite hang together as well as it could, but you can hear the workings of a band who know pop music well enough to tear it to pieces at will.

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