While the winter’s officially over, Chairlift—actually a non-skiing inspired name—is breaking ground with their new album Something.
Even though Chairlift’s song “Bruises” was featured on an iPod commercial in 2008, it’s taken a few years for the band to make its way on to iPod playlists. Something, while still every bit as synth-pop as their debut album Does You Inspire You, is a little more flowery and arty. It’s full of heartbreak and emotion, catapulted by vocalist Caroline Polachek’s breathy, soaring lyrics.
Since Does You Inspire You, band member Aaron Pfenning left the band to pursue a solo disco project called Rewards, Chairlift has adopted a little more edge to their pop style. It can be inferred that much of the heartbreak sung on Something is due to Polachek and Pfenning’s ended relationship—their loss is the listener’s gain. Something, a Polachek and fellow band member Patrick Wimberly project, has an edgier, more experimental side to it.
“Amanaemonesia,” the first single released from Something is an addictive upbeat track with mysterious lyrics. Polachek seems to delving into the healing rituals of amanae, “There’s a system of symbols that no one will vouch for, everyone uses and no one believes.” If you can say the song title three times fast you win extra fan points.
Other highlights on this album include; “I Belong in Your Arms” and “Sidewalk Safari,” which show the artists’ abilities to portray emotions and characters. In the gasping “Cool as a Fire” Polachek’s mourning over love lost, “the look in your eye says you don’t love me anymore,” bares her soul in an ethereal musical accompaniment.
Overall Something is a diverse set of 80s-esque tracks that are fun to listen to, interesting to think about, and different enough to sound like nothing but Chairlift. It’s a little retro with some modern technique. Keep your fingers crossed they make a British Columbian appearance this summer.