Sunday, February 4, 2018

YACHT - Strawberry Moon Review

Last we saw of YACHT they virtually imploded their own career when a sex tape allegedly leaked of the duo turned out to be nothing more than a publicity stunt for the music video of 'I Wanna Fuck You Till I'm Dead.' While I'm still unsure of their original intent, the internet didn't take too kindly to their desperate art project and proceeded to berate and bury the duo, whether justified or not. However, it wasn't exactly this magnificent misfire that entombed YACHT. The low quality of their latest LP I Thought The Future Would Be Cooler did the job without assistance. Nothing on that project compared to the delightful intrigue brought on by See Mystery Lights, and namely, their standout track 'Psychic City.' The self-effacing Strawberry Moon, a five-track EP that doesn't come equip with any sensationalist marketing campaign, aims to return to their genial roots of catchy Indietronica.

For the most part, they succeed. At least in comparison to the problematic and needlessly confrontational I Thought The Future Would Be Cooler. That album, at its worst, set aside musical enjoyment for a heavy-handed dose of provocation. 'The Entertainment,' 'War On Women,' and 'LA Plays Itself' were just some examples of their liberal testiness, basically alienating whatever fans not in their immediate typecast were left. Strawberry Moon has none of that political charge and, therefore, focuses attention back on the nonsensical catchiness. Opener 'Shame' accomplishes this the best, finding singer Claire Evans returning to her charming, childish spark that lit up 'Psychic City.' In fact, her adorable tone plays throughout the bulk of Strawberry Moon, relinquishing the autotune annoyance and basic Pop starling vocals spread across Future. Even though 'Finger Like A Gun' teeters ever so closely to jumpy, randomized Art Pop with a handful of scene set changes, Evans vocal chops here help to personify the otherwise bland production.

Elsewhere, 'Hard World' draws comparisons to LCD Soundsystem's early work, not a surprise given that James Murphy's creation was one of ultimate inspiration to YACHT. Really, replace Evans with Murphy and it would be hard to distinguish. See to 'tonite' off American Dream for a recent correlation. That's really the only direct point of influence though, as 'Strawberry Moon' and 'Shame' truly hark back towards YACHT's youthful days. There's less edgy corners, less distinguishing bleeps and bloops, but the charm and pizzaz still remains.


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