CUT COPY play Sound Academy April 7. See listing. Rating: NNNN
The title of an interlude track halfway through Cut Copy's third album could be the Melbourne-based trio's mandate: Strange Nostalgia For The Future. It arrives just when the album begins to break free from pop song structure and lapse into an ecstatic dream world of Beach Boyish harmonies, blissful melodies and seamlessly integrated analog and electronic percussion. Like their previous two, Zonoscope teeters on the threshold between a classic pop sensibility and deep affection for expansive dance music.
It's Cut Copy's most textured and rhythmically complex record, and also irresistible in its emotional simplicity. This is music to lose yourself in. As a producer, band mastermind Dan Whitford is increasingly assured and ambitious, but his lyric concerns will sound familiar to long-time fans: love on the cusp of igniting or on the brink of falling apart. That tension conveniently segues into his most overused trick: dropping the beat to cue the epic build. But such formulaic moments are forgivable when this beautifully realized.
Top track: Take Me Over