Caribou's "debut," The Milk of Human Kindness, had a few great ideas, but to me, it just seemed too...muddy. I didn't connect with it like I did Up in Flames. So Caribou's new single, Melody Day, took me by complete surprise. The three songs found on this criminally-brief EP represent a magical departure from his previous work, and I can only say...GREAT! "Melody Day" is very sunny. Not necessarily "happy," mind you, but it's sunny. It sounds like Dan Snaith heard a Turtles song and immediately rushed home to his studio to recreate the song verbatim. Failing horribly, but creating something totally wonderful and original instead. It also has a rough, demo-like quality, and thoug it's a bit heavy on percussion, Snaith makes up for that with gorgeous harmonies, a pulsating, non-stop rhythm, and a melody that's damn catchy. Try getting it out of your head. (You can't!) Four Tet's remixing turns down the sunny vibes, ditches the excessive percussion, slows it down a bit, and allows the gorgeous harmonies to come into focus. Are those children backing him up, or is it just Adem? Sounds like kids to these ears. With Hebden's touch, the once-jaunty pop song becomes a beautiful folk ballad. This remix is one of the rare instances where a radically different remix of an already-ace song actually sounds better than the source material. "Zoe," the b-side, is a brief but wonderful blast of orchestra pop that sounds like a First Class (or possibly The Yellow Balloon) instrumental backing track. It's loaded with bursts of sunny sounds, flutes, a loosely-tuned sitar, and other mysterious things. I've said a lot about three simple songs, but I'm thoroughly convinced that Andorra is going to be the high point of Snaith's career. It's unlike everything he's done so far, and these songs already tell me it's a record to be extremely proud about.
And yes, I'm lame, and I know the album came out today, on the wonderful Merge Records. You want to hear it? Go here and check it out!
Labels: bo07, Caribou, Merge Records, The single from the album