ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI

Rating: NN I'm all for bands evolving and moving forward, but what.


Rating: NN


I’m all for bands evolving and moving forward, but what the shit is this? After the joyous orchestral cacophony that defined 05’s In Case We Die disc, Aussie collective Architecture in Helsinki return with an awkward mess of shrieking faux island riddims and embarrassing rump-shaking elasto-funk.

Other than the cheery choral bits on second track Heart It Races, the Helsinkis have abandoned their affinity for coherent melodies, which makes most of the tracks here sound like a kindergarten singalong muddle. Worse, Cameron Bird has swapped that winsome tenor coo for Muppet-voiced yelps, squeaks and howls that’d make even Prince sick to his stomach.

If anything is consistent between the two releases, it’s the eight-plus-member crew’s sense of pure, childlike exuberance. But Bird’s meticulous arrangements of watercolour-sheer strings, organs, marimba and glockenspiel have been replaced by messy, garish Day-Glo synths, obnoxiously goofy farting brass and calypso-lite beat patterns that have all the authentic Caribbean flava of Sebastian the Crab’s Little Mermaid interludes.

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