Artist: Scissor Sisters
Release: Magic Hour
Release Date: 28th May 2012
Over the years Scissor Sisters have blessed us with deep disco delights such as ‘Comfortably Numb’, ‘Filthy Gorgeous’, and ‘Take Your Mama’ but Magic Hour offers something that none of the previous albums were capable of; an exploration of every dimension of dance, and boy you’re in for a ride of your life!
With more collaborators you can shake a stick at they enhance the magic that the band are showcasing. With a host of stellar artists, writers and producers including Azealia Banks, BoysNoize, Calvin Harris, Diplo and Pharrell Williams all sticking their oar in Shears, Babydaddy, Ana Matronic, Del Marquis and Randy Real have produced a unique, futuristic beat-driven pop album.
Recorded in New York and London last year Magic Hour is Club Tropicana doused in Pacha parades with a few ballads thrown in to soften it up. Even though it was a collaborative effort, Scissor Sisters’ old traits shine through and couldn’t have worked better with their new pulse quickening sound.
Latest single ‘Baby Come Home’ kick starts the album with some sultry soul with help from a gospel choir putting their lungs on the line for a hefty chorus. But the soul soon transforms into synth as ‘Keep your Shoes On’ adopts a Hot Chip-esque vibe making you put those dancing shoes to good use for the next 50 minutes! This sound resonates through a majority of the album as Calvin Harris makes his mark on ‘Only The Horses’ with it’s big synth-driven chorus. Azealia Banks does the same with single ‘Shady Love’ and the 90’s school disco beats of ‘Let’s Have a Kiki’ would make one of the most socially awkward nerds bust some moves on a rainbow lit dancefloor.
But with severe beats and bopping must come ballads and bongos, well, in Scissor Sisters world anyway. The harmonies in ‘Inevitable’ take us back to old Scissor Sisters and even though ‘The Secret Life Of Letters’ is a piano led sop song, Jakes voice accompanied by subtle strings is beautiful. As you daydream of yourself lying on the beach with a cocktail in your hand surrounded by hula dancers during ‘San Luis Obispo’, ‘Self Control’ instantly destroys the illusion. Daringly close to THAT Robin S song ‘Show Me Love’ that’s been sampled approximately 24,000 times, ‘Self Control’ is a downbeat chart worthy track but it’s resemblance is disappointing.
Jake Shears appears to be a quite a wordsmith on this album. We all knew his vocal chords could pack a punch but his time spent with Azealia Banks and Pharrell Williams has started to rub off on him as he raps with continuous flow and confidence. As Ms Matronic hilariously delivers the magic over the phone, bonus track ‘F*** Yeah’ follows with its mental bass and Jakes rapping skills.
‘Magic Hour’ does what it says on the tin and gives us a magical hour of delectable dance anthems that will no doubt be the soundtrack to your summer. Crank it up to 11!