Dan Black ((un))
Liberator Music, 2010, Album Review
Best known for his work fronting British alternative rockers The Servant, ((un)) is Dan Black’s first release since exiting the band in 2007. Citing a desire to explore new pastures, this album suggests Black has indeed spent the last few years doing just this. The debut solo effort sees him run his pop credentials through a synthesizer with the result categorized by much electronic experimentation and heavy sampling.
Self-produced in the basement of his Parisian apartment, this album has its high and low points. The standouts are, unsurprisingly, the singles. The hugely popular first taste Symphonies provides a chorus that will have you humming its riff long after the song is over. The Australian/US release of this single is enhanced by collaboration with American rapper, singer and actor Kid Cudi.
Unfortunately this and U + Me = compromise much of the strength in this release. The remainder is a set of passable electronica tracks with a selection, such as Cocoon and Cigarette Pack, that remain more faithful to his indie pop roots than the album’s singles.
While marred by too many moments of uninspired synthetic repetition and a vocal that some may find grating after extended listening, ((un)) presents two killer singles and a listenable array of electronic pop tracks that make for a well-rounded debut effort.
26 June 2010