John Talabot – ƒIN

15 Feb

The album title and the artist’s last name (despite “John” vs. “Jean”) had me assuming an early 2000’s Parisian house sound.  Barcelona’s John Talabot does incorporate elements of house in his debut, ƒIN, however it is far from sounding dated.  The musical chronology is intentionally skewed with track titles like “Destiny” (implying future), “When the Past Was Present” and “So Will Be Now…”  Talabot, like some of his other successful contemporary electronic genre-benders in Sepalcure and Gang Gang Dance, savvily blends deep house, world music, disco, funk, club and dub-steppy indie pop into one easy-to-swallow pill.

Talabot’s genre shape-shifting is polished with his attention to tracking so no song seems out of place.  There is a fluidity from the the dark disco of “Depak Ine” to the medicated Toro Y Moi-ish “Destiny (feat. Pional)” (my favorite track on the album) to the slower, housey “El Oeste” and so on.  “Journeys (feat. Ekhi)” could have landed itself as a B-side for the last Panda Bear album.  “Missing You” is a strange, bassy recollection of Talking Heads’ “Seen and Not Seen” with vocals by what sounds like a pilled-out android.  The final track on the album, “So Will Be Now…,” also featuring Pional, happens to be my second favorite track on the album.  It’s a manic, dancey house track that’s balanced with a James Blakian backdrop of ghoulish clamors.

ƒIN may be the most inappropriate title for John Talabot’s debut as it is about as strong a beginning as anyone could hope for.  ƒIN‘s a one-stop pop shop for those who like to move when they hear music.  According to Twitter, Talabot is now touring in France with SBTRKT.  Damn.  Bonnaroo 2012 may be the only venue for me to get my dance on this year in the US.

A should/must listen.

Noteworthy Tracks: “Destiny (feat. Pional),” “Oro y Sangre,” “Estiu,” and “So Will Be Now… (feat. Pional)”

Rating: ****1/2

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One Response to “John Talabot – ƒIN

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  1. The Self-Hating Hipster’s Top 12 Albums of 2012 « the self-hating hipster - January 24, 2013

    […] here for my full […]

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