Hot Chip - The Warning

by Rich Morris Rating: Release Date:

The second album from Hot Chip, The Warning sees these inspired pop alchemists pull off some truly devious musical juxtapositions. Scholars of music from Timbaland to Stevie Wonder to the Aphex Twin, this South London quartet make quirky, ideas-packed vocal electronica perpetually veering between moments of bliss, humour, and sheer sonic mentalism - take the opening "Careful", vocalists Alexis Taylor and Joe Goddard sweetly harmonising "Every year, exactly this time of year/They float a balloon up into the air", as the tune leapfrogs along on the sort of demented breakbeat rave seldom seen outside a Squarepusher record. Luckily, Hot Chip know enough not to sabotage all their elegant pop moments. "Boy From School" cribs deliciously from Stardust’s robo-Balearic anthem "Music Sounds Better With You", while "Over And Over" ("Like a monkey with a miniature cymbal/The joy of repetition really is in you") is bouncy testament to the joy of dumb, fun dance music. Further in, too, there’s sweet moments like "Look After Me", an R&B-tinged plea to an ex-lover, that sees these clever-clever white boys succeed in getting sentimental without resorting to irony. A dream synthesis of warmth and intelligence. --Louis Pattison

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