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In Our Heads has something for everyone. In this album, Hot Chip have perhaps fashioned one of, if not the best, dance album of the year. This album has everything, encompassing an audaciously sweeping spectrum of influences, from heartfelt indie ballads to dance-inducing pop. For many bands, such eclecticism would likely result in inconsistency but for Hot Chip, it all works and it all works well.

'Motion Sickness' is an immediate album highlight at track one and a perfect album opener, coupling an irresistible melody with glorious 80s synths, building neatly to a crescendo to create a song that is virtually impossible not to dance to. 'How Do You Do?' begins slowly before evolving into what can only be deemed electronic pandemonium that, as the song states, makes 'you want to move again'. As if you ever stopped moving. The 80s disco influence continues with 'Don't Deny Your Heart' and acts as a rhythmic finishing move to the album's brilliant 1-2 punch of an opener. 
 
ALBUM REVIEW - HOT CHIP 'IN OUR HEADS'
Nevertheless, despite its evident pop and dance leanings, In Our Heads is often surprisingly dark, both lyrically and sonically. This first comes to a listeners attention on the track 'Look At Where We Are', a clear homage to old school R&B slow jams, echoing the work of both Prince and R'Kelly. The ghostly samples, discordant vocal reverb and twinkling keys in 'These Chains' is also In Our Heads at its most menacing. Still, this sense of menace is counterbalanced by the tracks addictive house drums that many would find difficult not to nod their heads to. Lyrically, it is an interestingly mature take on the chains of responsibility and the need to embrace them. This track and the album as a whole is a great example of the bands subtle song-writing skills, which deftly lay the foundation for the pure sense of groove at the heart Hot Chip's music. Let Me Be Him is a lyrical highlight. Fragile, understated vocals add warmth to the tracks bare, cascading instrumental, resembling the very finest work of artists such as M83. Nonetheless, the complex 'Flutes' may be the album centrepiece. It combines elements of electronica and pop in a way the band seems to be particularly striving for on this record with the tracks haunting vocals and nuanced synths uniquely mixing sentiment and the stoic. 
 
From a production perspective, 'Ends Of The Earth' is a real standout, its drive and tempo really adding to the sense that something is about to happen and exhibiting Hot Chip's clear devotion to music in its purest sense. However, this track, as with several others, is overly long, musically sprawling and doesn't quite reach its indicated zenith. Such an issue is a slight downside to an otherwise stellar album. 
 
While it is a record that sometimes lacks pace, it is body of work that is at once positive, emotive and something that you can dance to. Such an effective combination is a rarity in both modern pop and electronica. As such, In Our Heads is a triumph of infectious, ambitious disco-influenced pop and worthy of acclaim, with Hot Chip seemingly never failing to deliver.
 
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Review - Jack O'Neill
 
 
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