baio

For almost a decade now, Chris Baio has been growing steadily restless as one half of Vampire Weekend’s rhythm section. The bass player has always planned to release a solo album and with his band on something of a hiatus since 2013’s ‘Modern Vampires of the City’, he’s taken the opportunity to drop his debut. And to be fair to Baio, it’s a bit of a departure. Most of ‘Brainwash yyrr Face’ finds him occupying territory closer to the electronic pop of Cut Copy and Hot Chip than the African-influenced indie he makes along with Ezra Koenig et al. Unfortunately the depth just isn’t there.

Constantly relying on the repetition of meandering electronic loops, the collection comes off as unfinished and unconvincing. ‘All The Idiots,’ for example, seems to be Baio’s take on house music, but as it edges limply over the 7-minute mark you’ll be glancing at your wrist wondering how on earth the minute hand hasn’t moved further. The vanity project status is enforced by the fact that lead single, ‘Endless Rhythm,’ is the album’s only strong track and also the closest Baio comes to the classic Vampire Weekend sound. A nice addition for existing fans, for the rest of us this is as disposable as its title suggests.

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