Thursday, December 20, 2012

12) In Our Heads - Hot Chip (TOP 20 OF 2012)

In Our Heads

Hot Chip
Domino Records.

SCQ Rating: 82%

My name’s Ryan and I’m a Hot Chip fan. Well that wasn’t so hard. But somehow, despite buying every record of theirs since 2006’s breakthrough The Warning – all of them under the cover of being for my wife, it should be noted – I’ve maintained a distance between the band’s infectious tracks and any bits of admiration I might've offered in return. Even after their brand of electro-pop, instantly catchy but often lacking the teeth to leave a full imprint, reached an impasse with 2010’s patchy-at-best One Life Stand, I somehow stuck it out for one more round.
This summer’s In Our Heads provided the TKO I forgot the British five-piece was capable of, and asserted that any long-sought, daydream Hot Chip record I wordlessly followed them for was no mere fantasy. “Motion Sickness” might just be the finest opener of the year, an emotive roll of the dice that consolidates all of the band’s well-known schizophrenic impulses, and subsequent tracks (“Don’t Deny Your Heart”, “Night and Day”) flesh out a funk-addled love-in of nerdy studio grooves and razor-sharp arrangements. It’s still very much a Hot Chip record, but the top-notch Hot Chip we’ve only heard in fits and spurts over the last few releases. If you’ve been on the fence throughout it all, In Our Heads might be your record to come clean to as well.

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