Top critical review
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Bold, epic outing
on October 20, 2011
I was really looking forward to M83's latest album after hearing "Midnight City", their excellent first single a few months ago. _Hurry Up, We're Dreaming_ is a well produced, audacious double album more or less continuing on from where _Saturdays=Youth_ left off. It's a pretty decent album overall, but I can't help feeling that Anthony G skimped a bit here and there when it comes to the melodies. You'll find a bunch of electro-pop tracks reminiscent of numerous 80's hits ("slappin' the bass, mon!") like Level 42 or Propaganda, a lot of instrumental interludes and keyboard driven melodies. This album sounds drenched in keyboards, and that's not always a bad thing. The saxophone can be heard embellishing a couple of songs. And there are a couple of tracks that feature acoustic guitar as well.
I really like most of the traditional, structured songs more than the instrumental interludes. "Reunion" starts off with some glorious chords and drums that sound like emphatic punctuation marks and remind me of the British band Prefab Sprout circa their _Jordan: the Comeback_ (1990) days. The drums crashing forth from the opening of "New Map" will take you back to "Don't Save Us from the Flames" from M83's 2005 release _Before the Dawn Heals Us_. "OK Pal" is a pretty catchy Howard Jones-ish number. But for me the highlight of the album, besides "Midnight City" is "Steve McQueen", a song with a soaring, fists-in-the-air chorus, dense guitars and pretty, swirling keyboards and lyrics that could be about what? The celebration of life, perhaps, self-forgiveness?, rejuvenation? It doesn't really matter. This song is REALLY GOOD.
"Fountains" and "Klaus I Love You" are a couple of the shorter, (mostly) instrumental pieces that work. In fact, I would have liked to hear how "KILY" would have sounded if it was more fleshed out. But most of the shorter songs don't have the melodies to make them memorable.
The album does seem to move along pretty quickly and considering its hour plus long running time, that's saying something. Perhaps some of the shorter tracks will grow on me as I keep listening. But the tracks worth hearing, the ones I keep going back to, are "Midnight City", "Reunion", and "Steve McQueen".
*** 1/2 stars