Next up to curate the Late Night Tales series, where an artist picks around 20 tracks they like to listen to in the wee small hours, is Metronomy. But surprisingly the selection by the act, who delivered one of 2011’s best pop albums English Riviera, is laced with less pop influences and far too many diversions.
There’s an experimental edge to the collection with the hip hop jazz of Sun Ra Creative Partner’s Cosmic Ball and Chick Corea’s El Bozo (Part One) also included. There’s also a loose 1970s and 1980s influence, with Japan bassist Mick Karn’s Weather in the Windmill among the most poignant highpoints, as he lost his battle with cancer last year. This era and the music of the likes Karn are clearly key influences for Metronomy’s driving force Joseph Mount and it’s no wonder that they picked Jean Michael Jarre’s Hypnose to cover, as part of Late Night Tales requirement for each curator to cover a track.
But with genres flying all over the shop, with Peter Drake’s 1964 pedal steel track Forever and Cat Power’s haunting track Werewolf also included, the combination of tracks presents an uneasy listen.
Herman Dune’s Winners Lose mixed with experimental jazz, hip-hop and R’n’B it ends up sounding like a mess and far from relaxing, which is one of the aims of the series.
Compared to the well researched folk of Midlake’s Late Night Tales or the 1960s and 1970s pop sensibility of Belle and Sebastian’s two collections this is a poor collection that would have benefited from a firmer focus on Metronomy’s key influence of 1970s and early 1980s pop, funk and jazz and less flights of fancy.
by Joe Lepper