Thursday, February 18, 2010


A very good friend of mine and one of my musical gurus - Piotrek aka Pan Di-Dziej, dropped this juicy review of Hot Chip's latest effort. A great read especially 4 all those ones undecided 2 buy or not 2 buy. Brilliant 2 have u guest appearing on my blog Piotrek. More of it in the future please. Enjoy:

Hot Chip – "One Life Stand"

Hot Chip's front man Alexis Taylor is not a very good singer. Nor is Bob Dylan. Whereas Dylan's songs had been wildly covered by many artists throughout decades, bringing some ease for those less tolerant of his voice, this is unlikely going to happen with Hot Chip's material. Mostly because their songs aren't as politically or socially significant. It's not like Hot Chip write bad lyrics or tuneless melodies, but taken out of their natural environment – a quirky electro pop production – they wouldn't stand a chance. A good remix of a Hot Chip tune is also a rarity. That only shows the cheekiness of the band. This is as good as it gets. It won't get any better. Hot Chip could have been a great production team providing material for less imaginative pop stars. Instead they choose to deliver it themselves. This is what we have to offer – take it or leave it. What makes the Band of Geeks from London so significant is their "in your face” attitude and ability to work within their limitations, mocking them occasionally. White geeky boys trying to adopt soul and R'n'b for a laptop generation? That couldn't possibly work. But it does. Their first three LPs were a proof of that, so is their new album, “One life stand”, on which takes down a notch on their sonic experiments. “One night stand” is warmer, more polished and accessible. It's also less synthetic and more alive than previous ones. That might be a sign of growing up or sophistication. Or maybe Hot Chip finally discovered their inner rock band after years of touring and incorporating computer generated sounds with live instruments. With last year's arrival and popularity of bands Hot Chip clearly influenced, the likes of Passion Pit and Miike Snow, it is possible they felt a need to please more people. Then again the album lacks the potential hit singles like “A boy from school”, “Over & over” or “ Ready for the floor”. There are very strong moments and few possible singles here. “One life stand”, a synthpop gem reminiscent of Laid Back's 1983 hit single “White horse”, is as close you will get to a dancefloor filler. Opening tracks “Thieves in the night” and “Hand me down your love” introduce more mature songwriting and complex, lush arrangements (listen to the strings on “Hand me ..”). Halfway through the album slows down and delivers a trio of cozy songs that show sensible side of the boys. In a lullaby-like “Slush” Alexis takes his singing “talent” to another level. Providing the backing vocals as well, he handles the gorgeous melody very carefully in a great piano balladry style. He might not be the greatest singer, but he certainly feels the songs. The closing “Take it in” opens with dark, cloudy electro intro just to let some sunshine in with a catchy refrain and finish the album with an upbeat feeling. “One life stand” is a bold step and a proof of Hot Chip's progress.


Piotrek Czarnecki