February 28, 2008

Test Spin: Goldfrapp

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I’m not too surprised that I was immediately hooked on Goldfrap’s new album, Seventh Tree, after listening through it only once. Some of its most immediate tracks fall into the very same category in which I’d place the Polyphonic Spree’s over-the-top, cheesy super-pop — admittedly a favorite genre of mine.

Thankfully, the entire album doesn’t aspire to be so supremely syrupy; that could’ve gotten tiring. Every track is, however, soaked in the warm, dreamy glow of a latter-day electronic fairy tale — like if Blade Runner was set in a futuristic playground instead of a dystopian mega-city. And, true to high-pop form, it’s best moments are gloriously sugary, like it’s penultimate track “Caravan Girl.” A high, bubbly synth cries across the background. Bumping drones set the beat. Digitalized blips etch a gorgeous melody around choral arrangements. Goldfrapp sings so high, it’s like she’s reaching for heaven — “Wanna Runaway! Na Na Na Na Na!” Run, don’t walk, and get your hands on Seventh Tree.