REVIEW album Old Subbacultcha Old Subbacultcha

Metronomy deliver their affection with Love Letters

Old Subbacultcha

Old Subbacultcha

Metronomy change their direction with a 70’s influenced retro fourth album

love letters

Metronomy – Love Letters  (out now) via Because Music 7/10

2011 was a very successful year for modern pop act Metronomy. Their highly acclaimed third album,
The English Riviera,
managed to sell a quarter of a million records worldwide and received a Mercury nomination for its colourful and cheerful summer tunes. After a three-year hiatus, the quintessentially English quartet release their fourth studio album
Love Letters
. The only reference to the previous album is the quote of singer Joseph Mount’s beloved England’s south coast “The Riviera” in the opening track
The Upsetter
. The noise of seagulls squawking  in the air and 
 crashing on the beach has been replaced by a retro and analogue sound inspired by The Zombies and funk and soul groups like The Supremes and Sly & The Family Stone while retaining a minimal outfit and a forward-looking approach.

Love Letters is a collection of lo-fi melodies and mature and melancholic rhythms, as evidenced on lead single I’m Aquarius. Being a father seems to have hugely influenced Mount’s writing process as his lyrics appear more reflective and his sound more developed. There is a reoccurring feeling of insecurity and love-related sadness as in Monstrous or Call Me where the singer cries out repeatedly, and perhaps hopelessly “We can get better, we can do anything, you could be mine”. Although the video for the title track was directed by the cult French director Michel Gondry, the song could be as well a theme of a Quentin Tarantino’s film. Its quiet instrumental intro filled of brass almost sounds like a funeral march before exploding  in a vintage funky harmony. Ultimately, amid the album, the only fully instrumental track Boy Racers reminisces of Devo with its sci-fi electronic vibes and differs from the rest of the record as it does not feature either Mount’s warm voice or drummer Anna Prior ‘s high-pitched falsetto.

As fans have experienced in the past, Metronomy like to experiment and further their sound in every release. The same general concept applies to Love Letters so if you were hoping to hear a remake of The English Riviera you will be very disappointed. However, there is a lot to enjoy and to relate to especially if you are either lovesick or love-struck.
Metronomy will be touring the UK this March. Dates are listed below: Thursday 13
th March, Liverpool Academy Friday 14
th March, Manchester Ritz Monday 17
th March, Nottingham Rock City Tuesday 18
th March, Leeds Academy Wednesday 19
th March, Glasgow ABC Thursday 20
th March, Newcastle Academy Friday 21
st March, Birmingham HMV Institute Sunday 23
rd March, Portsmouth Pyramids Centre Monday 24
th March, Bristol Academy Tuesday 25
th March, Oxford Academy Wednesday 26
th March, Norwich UEA Friday 28
th March England, London Brixton Academy