by Adam Brill ’17
“Caribou” is one of the stage names of Canadian musician Daniel Snaith. Snaith, over the past few years, has become increasingly less interested in experimentation and increasingly more interested in pop and dance sensibilities. His last album, Swim, showcases some solid grooves and really shows a step in the pop direction. However, his latest album, Our Love, seems much more of a holding ground than a step forward. It is much more homogenous than his last release, but it still displays the same middle ground between his earlier work and his pop interests. Swim seems more rooted in disco music, while Our Love is more rooted in modern house music sounds.
Parts of Our Love remind me of Disclosure’s album Settle. Much like Disclosure, Caribou has some very solid and catchy riffs and rhythms, which work to draw you into his songs. This is definitely Caribou’s most danceable album. However, while Caribou is able to churn out some catchy riffs, he doesn’t do too much to sustain interest throughout the album. The first half didn’t bother me, but his songs seem to be spread a little thin by the end of the album and he milks the riffs a bit too much.
However, I did enjoy certain moments on this album quite a bit. “All I Ever Need” and “Our Love” explore ideas that are well fleshed out and interesting enough to maintain the listeners’ interest. “Our Love,” the title track, is definitely the strongest song on the album by a significant margin. It manages to be lush and moody while also being sparse and catchy. The main vocal sample is simple but grabs the listener and goes very well with the bass riff. The drum riff is also well paced and evolves enough to keep the track moving. “Our Love” is probably the most accessible song on the album and has been stuck in my head for a few days. Besides these two standouts, “Second Chance” and “Julia Brightly” are also solid tracks. I think, ultimately, this album has some great grooves and textures, but occasionally struggles to keep the listener’s attention.