Young Galaxy - Falsework

by Rob Taylor Rating:8 Release Date:2015-10-30

Canadians, Young Galaxy are a fascinating chameleon. Anyone familiar with the self-titled debut from 2007 would hardly recognise them if they hadn’t kept abreast of YG’s stylistic shift of direction. The dream-pop/shoegaze days were superseded years ago when they kicked the ennui, and found their bubble and verve by, well, shapeshifting.  

Initially on Invisible Republic, they stuck with their familiar dreampop chassis, but with Shapeshifting they added layers of electronica and got bass-heavy. ‘Blown Minded’ from Shapeshifting sounded like Young Galaxy, if only they had been remixed by Ladytron.

The club-ready heavy beat system was a radical and exciting shift, and Catherine McCandless’s protean voice the perfect vehicle for accomplishing the change.  Ultramarine continued that trend at higher octane levels and with an eye to the remix market. 

Falsework advances the trajectory but injects a lot of fun, and a fair share of 1980s bubblegum dance pop and kitsch electronica into the admix. Take ‘Factory Flaws’ with a hint of faux calypso and unmistakable nod to Madonna’s ‘Holiday’. It may be reductive, but it’s pure, ass whoopin’ fun, and it has the funk. ‘Ready to Shine’ is equally infectious, adopting a beat structure imitating ‘Another One Bites The Dust’, and with a lovely pop hook conveyed by McCandless’s effortless R&B delivery. On that note, McCandless tackles a bit of soul on ‘We’re No Good’, sounding like it’s been rescued from obscurity by a tenacious Philadelphian crate digger. Doing authentic and sounding authentic is what could be summarised about ‘Falsework’.    

The reference to ‘Falsework’ is the use of vintage instrumentation for modern application, although one doesn’t need such self-consciousness in 2015’s boundless genre crossing. When it’s done with such good taste, it matters not. 

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