Lately, there has been a surge of synthesized-pop hitting the music scene. It’s been witnessed with the success of the Postal Service, Ima Robot, and a number of others. Everyone is swiftly claiming new roots in classics like Daft Punk and New Order. Described as a record to “light up your life,” excitement was soon in the air, and the giddiness lead to Cut Copy’s latest, Bright Like Neon Love, quickly finding its way into a CD player.
“Time Stands Still” doesn’t remind me of a dance club track. Well, maybe it does considering it has catchy hooks and simplistic lyrics that are easy to sing along to by the song’s end. Getting a thought that maybe this would be something different than the music that has been spurting out of the club scene, Bright Like Neon Love continued on. Then suddenly something happened. Nostalgia of the first days of synthesizers flooded my brain. Bad fashion, bad hair, bad music, it was all rushing back. By the time “Going Nowhere” rolls around, I had to wonder if this was just a copy of some old washed up album no one paid attention to in the 80’s. Luckily, there was a little bit of saving quality to “Going Nowhere” in the sense that Dan Whitford’s voice took on a number of different facets. Maybe it’s him; maybe it’s his pedals that he was playing with while recording.
“That Was Just a Dream” managed to remind me of the movie The Ring in the beginning with its creepy, mysterious sounds and ringing telephone. Paranoia? Perhaps. Weird music? Definitely. But even stranger was the fact that the next single “//” was exactly the same as the one before it. Now, if Whitford is running low on material, he could have just avoided releasing such a lengthy collection. The reduction to using the same song twice on the release was disappointing to say the least, citing this occurrence twice on the CD.
Towards the end, I was giving up hope for walking away with “my life lit up.” “Autobahn Music Box” was something of a savior to this album. It was truly different, and not just the same beats that have been played and over played across the board. While it didn’t really match the rest of the album, it was a good thing, because it’s about the only redeeming quality of Bright Like Neon Love.
Besides being a little freaked out and annoyed by hearing the same song 11 out of 12 times, I do have to admire Whitford for at least putting this out into the void. I still have yet to figure out if he wanted to prove anything with this album, or if he was just trying an experiment to see what he can get away with as far as repeating the same songs. But it didn’t work. When one song is the only thing saving this album from being pitched into the trash, it is honestly not even worth the listen.