Röyksopp

Senior by Röyksopp (MB3 Records)

Senior is the follow up to the Norwegian duo’s 2009 release Junior, an altogether mellower affair than the immediacy and catchy pop sensibilities of Junior. After a short intro of “…and the Forest Began to Sing“, Senior kicks in with Tricky Two, an early evening verions of Junior‘s Tricky Tricky, just as engaging yet more textured.

The Alcoholic follows, fittingly titled for its woozy keyboard patterns and beat that staggers around before meeting up with a sweetly plucked guitar, joined by bass and finally getting thrown out into the rain with birds chirping in the trees.

Senior Living begins with the sound of strings being played from an old record player, then becomes a bittersweet dance with crying guitar and throaty cello.

The Drug has at least two musical references to Aphex Twin and his two Selected Ambient Works, a fever dream of warped synth patterns and skipping snare and high-hat.

On Forsaken Cowboy, I can picture a couple slow dancing around a fire under the stars while wildlife looks on, flames reflecting in their eyes. The liquid keyboards, female vocal washes and woodsy acoustic guitar only add to the exotic feel.

Closing Senior, A Long, Long Way features Royksopp’s love of sculpting and shaping a mood in a very soundtrack-y way. In fact, much of Senior seems to be a calling card to film makers the world over that Röyksopp are more than ready to take the plunge into film scoring, following the likes of Orbital, Underworld, Daft Punk and Chemical Brothers. It’s only a matter of time before the duo of Svein Berge and Torbjørn Brundtland are heard on more than adverts for car insurance. See Röyksopp on tour in the states this March.

(Review by Bret Miller)

Official Homepage:  www.royksopp.com

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