I always found the word Pop difficult to describe music. I get that it’s popular but in a way it denigrates the strength of what you’re listening to, distilling it down to being inconsequential. Scott Hardware’s engaging new album opens with, not surprisingly, Intro which overlaps waves of ambience and grating synthesized sound, complimented and comntrasted by the warm tone of smooth bass. As voices drift in and out of view it is all at once epic, melancholic and strangely futuristic. And yes rather gorgeous. Then in quick succession the music caresses melodic sensibilities across sparse instrumentation, while peaking with the simply exquisite Joy, reinstating the power of song. There’s fascinating interplay between past influences which seem to trace back to Neil Young on Bound Together but the personal experience is never far from reach, with words engaging the mind – try Millionaire below – as the music often takes uncompromising, twisted turns and is all the stronger for it. As for Engel trying to be Pop, look at the cover!
Release: April 3
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