Monday, February 10, 2014

Album Review: Bibio - The Green

Album Rating: B-
Bibio has always seemed to just do what he wants, which for him means exploring the boundaries of the “folktronica” (eesh) style he's attributed with. It isn't uncommon to hear him pair chirpy, tv-friendly songs and more experimental electronic pieces as if it's a transition everyone is comfortable with, but he's managed to make it work by just being so god damn charming. Think of it as music for smartphone-era hippies.

The Green is pretty homogeneous by Bibio's standards: reworking two of the more psychedelic tracks from last year's Silver Wilkinson and bundling them in with similar songs from the archives. Bibio remains silent for the majority to focus on a warm, fuzzy blend of heavily modified guitar sounds, allowing them to weave together like letters on the album cover. At points he seems at risk of letting the album sink to darker depths with the slow, foreboding drawl of “Carbon Wulf” but The Green is characteristically light hearted. This is a peaceful, relaxing record through and through.

Sadly, it isn't quite as attention grabbing as previous work would lead us to expect. It lacks the pure charisma of Ambivalence Avenue and energetic highlights of Silver Wilkinson. Taken as a compilation of pre-existing tunes however, it's a solid addition to his discography and just about enough to bridge the gap to his next release.

1. Dye The Water Green
2. Dinghy
3. Down to the Sound
4. Carbon Wulf
5. A Thousand Syllables
6. The Spinney View of Hinkley Point

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