Sondre Lerche

Pleasure

PLZ

May 17, 2017 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Find It At: AMAZON

Either Norwegian artist Sondre Lerche isn't quite old enough or he refuses to allow youth to be wasted on the proverbial young. Pleasure, Lerche's latest full-length, arrives in full regalia, a dazzling (and dizzying) display of bleeps and bloops, bells and whistles. The opening one-two punch of New Order then New Edition ("Soft Feelings" followed by "I'm Always Watching You") sets the spirited tone for what eventually becomes a vivid album front to back, a musical version of a peacock's plumage, if you will.

Lerche's musical journey has allowed for new lanes to be paved over time, a jazzy influence here, a punchy rock statement there. But Pleasure is a whole new highway system moving in all directions at once. The ethereal spell cast by "Siamese Twin," the modern synth waves of "I Know Something That's Gonna Break Your Heart," the dated dance/funk of "Hello Stranger"all somehow part of a musical whole that makes sense only in Lerche's hands.

The real story here, however, isn't Lerche's musical ambition on its own. His opening stanza on "Soft Feelings" reads, "Since the spirit left my soul/Love is but an open hole/But the body's come alive/Since the spirit left my side." Even as the body comes alive, Lerche remains grounded enough, aware enough, to locate his spirit. The songs on Pleasure follow suit, pulsing even as Lerche pleads. On "Bleeding Out Into the Blue," Lerche gives his lover permission to wound him. "So sugar coat your demons and camouflage your theft/I'll water down your venom until there's nothing left," he sings to a riveting yet melancholic dance number. Such bright strokes color over such bold confessions equal Lerche's finest work since his debut. (www.sondrelerche.com

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