Little Dragon

Season High

Loma Vista

Apr 14, 2017 Issue #60 - Father John Misty Bookmark and Share


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It's been three years since Little Dragon blessed the scene with an album, 2014's Nabuma Rubberband, and honestly, it has felt like much longer. The brilliant Swedish indietronica group's presence in the world of sexy night out, fashionista club grooves has always provided a sophistication to its extravagance that has been sorely missed. The new music found on Season High instantly feels like a glass of ice water after sitting out by the pool too long. After a few seconds of the hurdling opening track "Celebrate" there's serious consideration of putting on a satin baseball jacket and some roller skates. Little Dragon follows the current fashion of embracing retro vibes but do it with such fierce style and subtle deference that you hardly notice. There's a good measure of '80s R&B and Euro-club coursing through Season High, and yet it all sounds incredibly fresh, while all you can pay attention to is their catwalk strut, led by the irresistible Yukimi Nagano.

Few singers can bend, drop, and weave vocals into the rhythm like Nagano. Her lasting  partners and providers of beat-Fredrik Källgren Wallin, Håkan Wirenstrand, and Erik Bodinoblige with their own synthesized, lyrically rhythmic language that, in turn, jumps in and on top of the beat constructs like parkour traceurs. Computerized accents and elegantly sculpted sound effects elevate these beyond the ordinary, or even exceptional, club mover. There is also the daring experimentalism of "Butterflies" and "Gravity" that smack of an advanced awareness of dance electronica's still undiscovered country.

If you've ever seen Little Dragon live, you'll know how much they're feeling the moment. Especially in how it awakens Nagano's animal instincts. The vibration consumes her being entirely and her vocals dance through the circulating music as much as her body does. On Season High, she's bringing a more versatile vocal treatment than ever. Always with the inimitable low range quaver, Nagano touches different ranges without a hitch. With an evolved new collection of tracks that are both hot and smart, Little Dragon has set themselves further apart. (www.little-dragon.net)

Author rating: 8/10

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