Album review: Hot Chip – ‘A Bath Full of Ecstasy’

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For London synth pop band Hot Chip, releasing their first album in four years on the summer solstice was no coincidence. A Bath Full of Ecstasy is a fresh step in the bands career, producing an upbeat summer soundtrack woven with magic.

Yet, it was on the eve of A Bath Full of Ecstasy’s release date, when producer Philipe Zdar sadly passed away.

It was the bands first time working with outside producers. They had recruited the late Philipe Zdar of French house duo Cassius to help create a psychedelic sound which courses through the album. The loss is tragic, however, Philipe’s sounds and upbeat zest will forever be immortalised.

Zdar’s expert supervision slowly edged Hot Chip out of their safe synth pop comfort zone. The albums opener, ‘Melody of Love’ began as a twelve minute experiment and was cut down to an unforgettable and dreamy four minutes. Alexis Taylor’s melodic vocals bring a certain melancholy tone to the track, whilst the trademark synth sounds are lightly peppered to keep it upbeat.

Although, ‘Hungry Child’ feels like a song you’ve heard before, maybe due to the familiar Hot Chip sounds coming through. It’s one of a few dance tunes on the album that are super catchy, energetic and an easy listen.

Songs like ‘Echo’ with lead chorus vocals, “I only want to be an echo of your beauty” and “leave your past behind, just an echo, nothing to regret” paired with the electric keyboard will leave its positive messages swirling in your head.

A feel good album that softly sends out chilled vibes; it’s nice to experience something a bit different from a band that’s been around for a long time, breaking from what they know.

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Film Media and Journalism student at the University of Stirling. Editor in Chief at Brig Newspaper. Edinburgh / Stirling

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