Tag Archives: passion pit

ALBUM REVIEW: Passion Pit – Kindred (2015)

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This article first appeared on The Daily Listening.

It doesn’t feel that long since Gossamer hit the waves, but three years definitely feels like too long. It’s something that not a lot of bands possess, longevity. I guess you could chalk it up to consistent albums that brandished so many infectious individual singles. Either that or they’ve just gone unnoticed, but I’d find that hard to believe. It’s a trend that Brooklynites Passion Pit continued as they busted back onto the scene in a huge way earlier this year to lead up to the grand opening of their third studio album Kindred, which hit the stores this week.

Kindred opens up with old school Passion Pit circa Manners era, with the wholly traditional and hugely impressive “Lifted Up (1985)”. It’s a beautiful, uplifting tune that sparks curiosity and happiness while still holding an obvious serious message within the depths of the lyrics. The vocals are more defined, more appropriate and all-round just spot on. It’s the first true sign that Passion Pit are back in a way that could transport you back to those glory days when they first graced your ears.

“Whole Life Story” shows off a deeper register in the vocals, peeking its head through a funky vibe that spruiks positivity to a happy-go-lucky beat. At this point, we’re starting to piece together the clues that indicate we’re back those old-school memories of the act, but that’s flipped all over the place by the third track “Where The Sky Hangs”. There’s a tinge of new age eighties and funk intertwined with this strange that points to the influence of perhaps a range of different Australian acts like Miami Horror or Cut Copy.

Now we’re starting to get a real feel for Kindred, and “Five Foot Ten (I)” delivers more absolute pop brilliance. It’s one of the easier to swallow tracks on the album, smashing through static synth and samples with memorable pop melodies lain cleverly over the top. Putting it real simply, this one a is a fucking fun tune.

We get all touchy-feely as we hit the song “Dancing On The Grave”, with childlike chimes and melancholic lyrics. Aptly named for a ballad, this one rips the party atmosphere of the last track away before you’ve had a chance to catch your breath. It’s not the best single on the album, and will surely be overlooked by most. But it’s a decent little number if you’re feeling sad, so I say wait for the right moment before you crack in the earbuds on this one.

“Until We Can’t (Let Go)” is the latest single to be put forward in line with the album and it’s obvious why they chose this one as one of the headliners to give way to the album releases big bang. It’s catchy, unique and bloody powerful. You can imagine this being pumped live at a festival like Coachella, kids with their arms in the air while they dominate the crowd with the lyrics “let’s go ‘til we can’t anymore”. It’s a truly inspiring piece of musical work.

“My Brother Taught Me How To Swim” and the auto-tune infused “Ten Feet Tall (II)” are the appropriate way to leave behind Kindred. Two tracks that have a lot of heart. But really, it’s a repeated notion. The whole album has a shit-tonne of heart. It’s filled to the brim with dance, with pop and with inspiring, first-class music on the whole.

Now that I’ve heard Kindred, I’ll be honest. I’m going to miss Passion Pit for the next three years. But while I’m being honest, what they’ve really executed with this album is one more faithful believer that will happily sit on these awesome tracks for another three years until they’re ready to feed me with more awesomeness. Well played Passion Pit, well played.

*****

8.9 / 10

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Kid Astray – Still Chasing Nothing

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Maaaan, I have yet to be more impressed by a new-ish band in 2015 than I am with this Norwegian powerhouse of indie brilliance. Kid Astray have since released the amazing “It’s Alright”, although I had to go back and check this one out.

“Still Chasing Nothing” reminds me of Australians Tim & Jean, or in a looser way, Passion Pit without the falsetto vocals. It’s got a huge beat and pace, synth pulsating through the middle keeping the vocal melodies in check. in 2015, it’s hard to dislike anything this band have released and I’m very much looking forward to a release later this year.

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Passion Pit – Lifted Up (1985)

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When I first got into Passion Pit I was working as a cleaner at a ski resort in Canada. I listened to “Little Secrets” and “To Kingdom Come” from their debut album Manners while vacuuming hallways for wealthy Calgarians, I snowboarded day in and day out in the most unbelievable part of the world while “Sleepyhead” blasted through my helmet headphones. When their follow up Gossamer came out I was just about to finish University, I jammed out to “Carried Away” while nutting out those last few paragraphs of my last few assignments at 4AM. My life changed completely every time one of their albums came out, whether it was because of the album or not, Passion Pit is a band that I’ll always remember, and this song takes me back.

Their brand spanking new track, “Lifted Up (1985)” is getting back to their roots. It’s a beautiful, uplifting tune that sparks curiosity and happiness while still holding an obvious serious message within the depths of the lyrics. The vocals are more defined, more appropriate and all-round just spot on. It just seriously gets me excited. Passion Pit are back in a way that transports me back to those pow-days, carving tracks through unique landscapes and completely switching off from real life. If I can leave this post with one thought, it’s that when their new album comes out, you need it in your life.

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Tim & Jean – Like What

So this is weird. I started listening to Tim & Jean this morning as per a spotify recommendation and immediately thought, why the hell haven’t I heard of these guys before?

Looks like this album, Like What, sprouted almost a year after the success of Passion Pit’s Manners, and you can easily pick out similarities between the two. Like, REALLY pick up the similarities. A lot of music blogs would heavily criticize the “unoriginal” nature of such an album, but I on the other hand, love stuff like this. In the times when an album like Manners really starts to wear on you for the fact that you love the style and the songs but hitting the repeat button so many times starts to make you ache for a similar vibe, just different songs. A new album is too far away and I need my fix now. Here enters, Tim & Jean, with their smooth electro-styled dance-rock loveliness.

Have at it crowd.

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