Review: Stereolab – Chemical Chords

Stereolab - Chemical ChordsStereolab
Chemical Chords
4AD August 18, 2008

Stereolab’s made enough of a name for themselves by now that most releases will hit the radar of an assortment of music fans, especially those finding themselves attracted to the indie pop sound this bold outfit is known for producing so elegantly.

Stereolab – “Three Women” | download | preview at Beggars Group USA

Chemical Chords doesn’t depart too distantly from typical Stereolab releases, as the band sticks to the basic formula of what’s already worked for them: produce upbeat, slightly outlandish psychedelic-inflected pop music. Chemical Chords does, though, include a bit more of a chamber pop influence that’s certainly not worth being upset over.

From cutting synth riffs to smoothed over dream pop-esque vocals, Chemical Chords takes what Stereolab does best and does it again. Yes, you’ll find new melodies here, and you will find updated approaches, as well as a lovely string-laden title track, but you’re not going to find a new band in the place of Stereolab — that would be quite outrageous, really.

Chemical Chords succeeds on many levels, as Stereolab provide yet another chapter to their musical career that shows the band in a light that, while not new, has had the bulb changed again: This music is just as bright as it ever was, and coming from Stereolab, there’s no way that can be considered a bad thing.


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