Samstag, 19. November 2016

Grouplove - Big Mess






















Zunächst flüchtet man sich noch in den Gedanken, dass Grouplove vielleicht das bessere Weezer-Album abgeliefert hätten. Doch spätestens mit dem fünften Lied, „Good Morning“, folgt ein cheesy Synth-Pop-Song, der diese Illusion schnell zerschlägt. Leider kann sich „Big Mess“, das dritte Album des Quintetts, nach diesem Tiefschlag nicht mehr recht erholen. Im folgenden lassen Grouplove Beats aus dem Drumcomputer auf Haudrauf-Rock treffen und man beginnt an der Band, die mit „Never Trust A Happy Song“ (2011) noch voll und mit „Spreading Rumours“ (2013) noch angemessen zu überzeugen wusste, zu zweifeln. Mit „Don’t Stop Making It Happen“ folgt später sogar noch ein weiterer Treffer unter der Gürtellinie, so dass man sich beim abschließenden „Hollywood“ im falschen Film wähnt und überprüft, ob sich nicht versehentlich ein Song von Starship in die Playlist eingeschlichen hat.


Offensichtlich kann man hinsichtlich „Big Mess“ sehr geteilter Meinung sein: Allmusic sieht die Platte bei 9/10, Drowned In Sound bei 3/10. Man darf gespannt sein, wohin die Plattenrichter tendieren.




The couple's vocal symmetry has always been a huge part of what makes Grouplove's sound so engaging, and their growth, both personally and creatively, is evident throughout Big Mess. It's a theme they tackle straight-away on the soaring lead-off track "Welcome to Your Life," singing, "Been wondering, I take a chance/That chance is circumstance/'Cause nothing ever comes without a change." Elsewhere, cuts like the bombastic "Do You Love Someone," "Standing in the Sun," and the pulsing, electronic dance music-infused "Good Morning," find the band staking out the improbable, and improbably likeable, middle ground between Katy Perry and the Pixies. Similarly, tracks like the yearning "Heart of Mine" and romantic "Enlighten Me" bring to mind an engaging mix of the Flaming Lips and Fun.. Which isn't to say that Grouplove don't sound like themselves here. On the contrary, they've simply reached the place where they are able to channel their influences through their own voice and their own experiences. Ultimately, by celebrating those life experiences on Big Mess, Grouplove have crafted an ecstatic, joyful album.
(allmusic)




At the very least, Big Mess deserves minor plaudits for one decent romp, 'Cannonball'. No, it's not a Breeders cover, but if the lot had any sense, they'd lob this one at every college radio station. You'd think that Zucconi would bomb at rap - and he does, but he doesn't completely embarrass himself. You'd also think that the exuberant, get-down chorus would clash with the slick electro verses - and it does, but in a pop album where everything else runs smoothly and without incident, a little clashing livens the party. On the whole, though, Grouplove have done nothing to deserve our attention. Like needy college students – really, like 90 percent of other indie pop bands – they ask us to join them in a stable, homogenous world where everything revolves around them. No, Grouplove, you can’t build your Urban Outfitters here. No, you’re not a big mess. Learn to see the world as someone else’s, and then we can talk about love.
(Drowned In Sound)