The Reason(s) We Can’t Stop Listening: I never thought I could love a Chemical Brothers album. Crush on a few tracks perhaps. Swoon over a night of live festival favorites maybe. But true love is something you never want to share, and the Chems’ reliance on radio-friendly guest vocalists has always meant feeling like you’re not the only other person in the relationship. After all, mass adoration doesn’t blend well with intimacy.
So upon learning that the duo’s eighth full-length would be devoid of guests, it suddenly seemed like Tom and Ed were out to seduce us all first hand. Which is mostly the case, from the pulse-quickening bleeps of â€œSnowâ€ straight into the tantric throb of lead 12-minute single â€œEscape Velocity,â€ this is the attention we’ve always craved from these electronic gigolos.
Not to say it’s all happily ever after. â€œHorse Powerâ€ is too tied to old habits, with its hyper-jacked beat and ghastly clichÃ© vocal snippet (guess what it says) making you question your commitment while the lounge lizard shimmy of â€œK+D+Bâ€ hints at the inevitable decline in attractiveness we all face in our partners. But then there’s the aching synth melody and twirling high-hats of â€œSwoonâ€ with the lyrics â€œJust remember to fall in love,â€ and you suddenly realize that this album really could be forever. – Josh Glazer