It is interesting to see yet another old shoegaze band heading in a new, more electronic direction.Those familiar with Blonde Redhead’s long career will know that they like to switch things up from album to album. The band has played around with shoegaze until they hit success with 23. Afterwards, they moved in a minimalist direction with Penny Sparkle, leading us up to now with Barragan. Gone are the walls of fuzzed guitars and decadent noise, replaced with sleek beats, glass vocals, and enough reverb to get your socks wet. Some songs, like the fantastic “Dripping” and “No More Honey,” have an obvious electropop influence, sounding a bit like a smoother Medicine. Other tunes take a more intimate approach, if not being a little, how to say, sly? I didn’t find the album to be overly stable, some songs fell a bit flat next to those that really took off. “Dripping” is so off the handle, it’s not fair to the acoustic numbers. It’s not Blonde Redhead’s best work, but there’s some great songs in here, and it’s interesting to see yet another old shoegaze band heading in a new, more electronic direction.
Reccomended if you like Medicine and Washed Out.
Recommended Tracks: “Dripping,” No More Honey,” “Cat On Tin Roof,” and “Penultimo”
Reviewed by Doug Bybee of September 5, 2014