Album Review

Head First

Head First

by Goldfrapp

Mute Records
7 / 10
16th April 2010

Reviewed by Karyn Cushen

Goldfrapp’s fifth and latest release, Head First, is positively dripping with eighties nostalgia, standing in stark contrast to their abysmal downtempo, folk-inspired release Seventh Tree (2008).

The album begins explosively with Rocket, complete with an intro of fabricated rocket sounds, which is packed with a pop-friendly bassline and a throbbing, heavy synth. Alison Goldfrapp’s voice commands the track’s basic chorus line: “I got a rocket/you’re going on it/you’re never coming back”, producing musical candy for the masses.

Rocket provides a fitting foundation for a glorious pop album that delivers eighties gems track after track, particularly Believer, Alive, Head First, Shiny and Warm and I Wanna Life, reminiscent of late Fleetwood Mac and Electric Light Orchestra.

However, while Head First is a fantastic pop album, perhaps the best eighties tribute album amidst the latest indie fad to replicate the sounds of that era, it is uninspiring and lacks depth, surmounting to a few flashy hooks and superficial, dreamy choruses. Goldfrapp is better than that, proven by their back catalogue: Felt Mountain (2000), Black Cherry (2003) and Supernature (2005), and for that reason alone I was disappointed by this release.