TV on the Radio - Dear Science - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

TV on the Radio - Dear Science

by Rich Morris Rating: Release Date:

For a few years now Brooklyn's TV on the Radio's obtuse but powerful art-rock has been consistently acclaimed by critics and peers without quite entering mainstream consciousness, a state of affairs the release of Dear Science is about to change for good. On their third studio set, their best and most cohesive album to date, the five mad scientists that make up TVOTR (no exaggeration--the sleeve photo captures them in a laboratory looking very serious) have managed to marry their love for the sonically indulgent to some seriously impressive songwriting. The results are always convincing and occasionally stunning. Sometime actor Tunde Adebimpe's yearning voice at times evokes eighties icons from Prince to Peter Gabriel while David Sitek, the band member behind the board, enhances his reputation as a producer, placing detailed strings and horn arrangements alongside the most unearthly and inorganic sounds. Brilliant single "Golden Age" sounds like an imaginary collaboration of David Bowie and Michael Jackson, the lovely "Family Tree" is a ballad beamed from the future while the furious, fascinating "Dancing Choose" is a hit in waiting. Ranging from the funky ("Red Dress") to the frantic ("Shout Me Out"), and even revisiting their admitted penchant for, er, barbershop harmonies (the heroic "Halfway House"). Dear Science is one of the albums of the year. --Steve Jelbert

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