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Album Review

by Atlas Sound


Review Date
21st November 2009
Reviewed by
Paul Gallagher

Atlas Sound has always been a deeply personal, even corporeal project for Bradford Cox (Deerhunter’s lead singer). With countless tracks and digiEPs recorded reel-to-reel in his bedroom or even on answer phone cassettes from within foreign hotel rooms – Cox’s solo work is an intimate craft of physicality. His last full length Let The Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel was a depressive naval gazing laptop-on-the-bedspread effort at times. But Logos is a bigger, brighter, brasher animal altogether – it’s a corner turned, a blossoming into spring from the winter of where Let The Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel was born.

Bradford Cox has never been all that shy about his love for other music and other musicians. And without a doubt, Walkabout featuring Noah Lennox (Animal Collective member and solo artist Panda Bear) is the standout track on the album which perfectly encapsulates this cohabitation. Leading into the track with what I’m pretty sure is a sample from a No Age number, the beat of the this song is built around a looped sample of What Am I Going To Do by the Dovers. It’s a sunny, enthusiastic track that is almost oddly surprising in its upbeat and technical brilliance.

Quick Canal (featuring vocals and lyrics from Laetitia Sadier from Stereolab) is a track where Cox can wear his 1990s alt-pop affectations on his sleeve, with an increasingly persistent Krautrock-inspired beat that grows alongside the incredible duet that Cox and Sadier throughout the almost 9-minute epic track of shoegaze splendour. With both Quick Canal and Walkabout, Cox has drawn along with him the talent of others.

Within Sheila – an upstart of a pop-driven track – there is still evidence about the feelings that haunt the well-diarised thoughts of Cox’s past. ‘When we die we’ll bury ourselves, cause no one wants to die alone’ could easily be an extension of Agoraphobia – a standout from Deerhunter’s recent Microcastle / Weird Era Con.

Logos is an album that adequately shows how Bradford Cox is growing as an artist who has drawn more and more fandom and critical success that most of his peers in the few short years he’s been in the public eye. While it still dwells on some of the melancholy of albums and EPs past, Logos is a stepping out into the sunlight; a picking up in one’s outlook from an artist making the most of the positives emanating from amongst the pains in life. As Cox himself sings on the title track as the album draws to a close, ‘Logos is the king of life, fights away all that decays.’

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