Album of the year…?

11 07 2016

We are barely halfway through Summer; in fact, in Hong Kong, not even – yet already there has been some great Summer music from Alicia Keys, Blood Orange (and soon, we hope, Frank Ocean). But no-one has put out a better album this Summer than Roisin Murphy with a spectacular return to form in “Take Her Up to Monto”. Not that her last album, “Hairless Toys,” was bad. It contained a handful of memorable tunes, some of which (namely “Unputdownable” and “Exploitation”) I listened to at this time last year, on a bus crossing the Mekong River of the Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge.

But the new record, apparently named after a bawdy Irish folk shanty, takes me back to the nineties – its been a while since I heard a record where every song works, they are all so exciting yet so different, and they all work (well, bar one perhaps; “Nervous Sleep” doesn’t do much for me.) The songs lurch from polished jazz ballads to thumping minimal techno-esque numbers, via cod-reggae, Grace Jones voiceovers and Shiina Ringo-like orchestral flourishes, all with melodies are to die for.

Weird, well-produced, way-off-centre pop music from a master at the top of her game.

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