Chromatics | Closer To Grey | Italians Do It Better
Initial Release Date: October 2nd, 2019
Feature Image: Chromatics via Echo Park Records
Singing with vibrancy, the lucidity of purples, pinks and blues gleam; 80’s moonlight in a nostalgic dance, sweeping amongst the experimental and the familiar. Cradling the delicate jigsaw of atmosphere, sculpting aura through sounds swimming within us in imagery and personal journeys. Carefully considered, glowing with raw electronica.
American synth-pop darlings Chromatics are rarely in need of an introduction, with the band’s distinct personality and musical approach allowing them to stand out since their conception almost two decades ago in 2001. Boasting an array of sounds, never confined; Chromatics willingness to play with genre allows for each record to be a brand new traverse in careful, loving songwriting – with coherent, focused themes woven into all their endeavours as if building soundtracks for different periods in time. Returning with ‘Closer To Grey’ – with their expected, previous LP ‘Dear Tommy’ never seeing the light of day after Johnny Jewel, the band’s multi-instrumentalist, iconic producer and founder of their label ‘Italians Do It Better’ initial scrapped the album: ‘Closer To Grey’ follows 2012’s ‘Kill For Love’, after an extensive seven year interval. Showcasing the band’s ability to structure albums filled with aesthetic, ‘Closer To Grey’ sings no different.
‘You’re No Good’ opens in a honeyed 80’s bliss, twinkling keys singing amongst Ruth Radelet’s dream-pop vocals; a steady bass and percussive clap swirling into animation, an upbeat dance channeling the glittering aura of disco – self-assured in progression, Radelet’s harmonies sway amongst the love-song jive. Embracing a textural traverse, synthesizers bloom amongst the percussive – building a steady rhythmic nostalgia, a hint of lyrical melancholy among the glittering dance floor ready track.
An introduction in sparkling illumination, a gentle lucidity; ‘Light as a Feather’ showcases Radelet’s tender vocals, dreamlike and poetic amongst a starry sky – nourishing a raw reflection, rhythm increasing in tempo as the percussion sings trip-hop ethereal. A loving aura surrounds the track, a synth-pop reverie blooming in a melodious trance; curious synths crying lyrical among the confidence of the beat, Radelet’s luscious harmonies glimmering in a gossamer glaze.
Greeting listeners with ever-so-slightly haunting cyber-synths, ‘Whispers In The Hall’ opens with a tinge of sci-fi melody, machines flickering lights in an ominous dark and complimenting beat; a soundtrack for a slow-burning thriller in a synthesizer dance. Radelet’s vocals compassionate in the gentle melancholy of the lyrics:
“Little girl, the world just wants to break you
They’ve come to know that look inside your eyes
Don’t you know it only makes you stronger
You don’t have to try to run and hide…”
The driving heartbeat synthesizer and ghostly vocals sweep into the engulf of a wall of sound, layered in careful chaos; boasting a beautiful darkness.
‘Closer To Grey’ is yet another example of Chromatic’s ability to create distinct, vibrant atmospheres. Playful with textures yet blooming with intricate, intimate songwriting – ‘Closer To Grey’ sings like a journey through a dream, a dance floor lucidity showcasing the band’s bright personality through their ever unique sound.