James Blake - Overgrown - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

James Blake - Overgrown

by Dan Clay Rating:7.5 Release Date:2013-04-08

With his eponymous debut in 2011, Blake captured the music world's attention with his startling cover of Feist's '

'. Such was the influence of the experimental artist, even acoustic-maestro Bon Iver turned to electronica to complete his second album last year. Back with some new beats, can Blake surprise us once again?

Don't expect Overgrown to be the sort of record you might put on before a night out; Blake's not quite re-invented his wheel that far just yet. But if you're looking for the perfect comedown LP, or for those just seeking to chill out with crystal-clear beats on the cold Spring nights, then this ought to just about do it. From the fractured chords and gentle top-hat brushing of the title track and opener, through to the closing dreamy refrain on 'Our Love Comes Back', Blake's use of beats, chords and that falsetto voice matches his debut for sheer quality.

Whether it's the fuzzy sound of 'Life Round Here' or the post-apocalyptic vibe of 'Take a Fall For Me', featuring rapper RZA, there's plenty for dubstep and electronic fans to enjoy here. While lead single '

' doesn't quite go where you hoped, the sweet and sparse piano on 'DLM (Don't Let Me)' makes for a refreshing change. Meanwhile, 'To the Last's' melodic chorus and the dreamy bookends of closing track 'Our Love Comes Back' end the album on a strong note.

While Overgrown isn't exactly going to excite the pulses, it certainly impresses.

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