Free Your Mind
Nov 01, 2013 Web Exclusive
Fans of Cut Copy who are expecting more of the brilliant and addictive dance-pop they're known for will not be disappointed in their fourth album, Free Your Mind. Anyone looking for a step in any other direction will likely need to recalibrate their expectations. Cut Copy show no signs of letting the party die down on Free Your Mind, which takes their infectious mixture of kitschy disco beats and hipster-approved party glam to a new psychedelic level. Cut Copy play trip-sitter on gradually progressing expansions of consciousness in the form of easily-digestible pop music. It's not necessarily a reinvention of their sound, but there's nothing wrong with sticking to something that works.
Dave Fridmann mixed Free Your Mind, bringing the indie cred—not that they need it—he's accumulated over the years facilitating The Flaming Lips' experimental sound and producing albums for MGMT and Tame Impala. Free Your Mind is brimming with liberating hooks and an unrelenting cosmic force that playfully hovers over the persistence of its grooves. After a briefly ghoulish intro, "Free Your Mind" kicks the album into gear with a retro bounce that builds into a soulful refrain, "Shine, brother/Shine on." You can almost see the glittery disco lights emanating from the speakers.
Nearly every track is a highlight; these are accentuated by brief detours into psychedelic space. If Cut Copy is going to invite you to free your mind, after all, they might as well map out some ambient pastures to graze on while waiting for the next rave. "Take Me Higher" sprawls out over harmonious peaks and pleasantly surprising choruses before leading into a mysterious spoken declaration of a "spiritual experience." Ultimately, that's the destination. Free Your Mind begins unassumingly as a cleverly-structured pop record, but evolves into a more meditative endeavor—without missing a beat of the fun. The penultimate "Walking In the Sky" is Cut Copy's nirvana, a blissful retreat into enlightenment following an album's worth of ascending pop mastery. (www.cutcopy.net)
Author rating: 8/10
Average reader rating: 7/10
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