Primal Scream



Mar 14, 2016 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

When Primal Scream truly hit their groove, there's no resisting the overpowering engulf of their omnipresent psychedelic disco. Bobby Gillespie and co. are masters of hypnotics at this point, their immersive signature baggy tumult as undeniable as it is effortless. Pop music seems to have the same effect on even the musicians most estranged with commercial ethos. The allure of primitive, infectious pop songs is undying, and the Primals have finally been utterly consumed by feel-good pop on Chaosmosis.   

"It's what you get/what did you expect" affirms a vigorous Gillespie on "100% or Nothing," an equally charged HAIM racketing in good spirits behind him. It's true, Chaosmosis is a familiar record. Primal Scream have strutted their way through this cosmic meltdown of a party a million times before, but never quite so convincingly. The subtle claws at experimental sounds with which Scream once punctuated (and often hindered) their music seem to have faded, and there's a fresh clarity about their sound here. Opener "Trippin' on Your Love" is an unashamed psych-funk coup that melts all the off-kilter organ melodies and colorful guitar tones that the band once used to divert their huge chorus centerpieces from being all-out pop songs into the most rigid pop structure imaginable. "Where the Light Gets In" has a genuine sense of commercial viability. When Gillespie gets locked into an enticing call and response melody with Sky Ferreira, it's hard to deny that the transition to earworm pop has been a smooth one.

Chaosmosis is a record ultra-charged by love, a deliberately lovable antidote to the hostile political environment that the U.K. finds itself in. It's also solid proof that Primal Scream are only getting better at blurring the lines between oddball and popular music, and in fact they pretty much erode it completely. (

Author rating: 7.5/10

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