60 second reviews

Energy: Disclosure

(Island Records)

A good spin…for a spin class

Back in 2013, Disclosure produced one of the few great dance albums of the 2010s, ‘Settle’. Their brilliant debut stood out especially because dance/electronic albums just weren’t as popular in 2010s as compared to the 1990s/early 2000s when the likes of The Chemical Brothers, Massive Attack, Daft Punk and The Prodigy had huge success.

‘Settle’ was great – Full of instant dance classics (like ‘Latch’), integrating house with other genres and generally freshening up an arguably tired house scene. It was also influential, spawning the popularity of many other artists and DJs such as Sam Smith.

Then Disclosure followed up ‘Settle’ with ‘Caracal’. Unlike their first album it was a slower tempo dance record and didn’t demand repeat listens.Whilst once again full of guest artists, it simply tried too hard.

Disclosure now return with ‘Energy’. Coincidently the title track channels the spirit of Settle with its urgent pulsing. Overall the whole album is an improvement on ‘Caracal’, with more cross-genre goodness along with diversions to garage and deeper house grooves. ‘Watch your step’ featuring the effervescent Kelis is excellent, managing to sound “retro” 00s yet very 2020.

Befitting the title of an album called Energy there is a lot of light in the record, foregoing the quieter zones/lower tempo which overwhelmed their dreary second. Closing track ‘Reverie’ featuring Common is particularly majestic. It’s super smooth and a great way to end the album.

As a whole though, the album is still about 3 or 4 tracks too long and a little repetitive, almost sounding like a compilation which would be put on repeat in the background in clothing shops. But ‘Energy’ will also please fans and be an excellent record for those wanting a warm up record before heading out or (as per 2020) dancing in their houses. But perhaps its’ best use would be to use as a soundtrack for your next workout, perhaps interval training. A much better effort, but ultimately unable to match their magnificent debut.

Key Tracks: ‘Reverie’, ‘Watch Your Step’, ‘Energy’

6/10

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