Washed Out: Purple Noon review – radio-friendly, up to a point | The Guardian

(Sub Pop) He’s a master of mood and melody, but a more pop-facing Ernest Greene needs to let rip a littleCraftsmanship can be underrated. We want musicians to be unfettered geniuses with lightning at their fingertips, not digital coalminers digging grimly for zeroes and ones. Ernest Greene’s Washed Out project was always painstakingly put together, with fuzzily tuneful gems like 2009’s Feel It All Around encouraging chillwave’s horizontal revolution. But it rarely felt crafted, because true craft always disguises itself as inspiration.Over the years, Greene has tinkered gently with his formula, and this fourth album adds more radio-friendly arrangements on songs like Too Late and Time to Walk Away. Only the multilayered finale, Haunt, really tries something interesting. He remains a brilliant technician of mood and melody, but as he edges closer to pop, Greene’s vocal limitations are accentuated. You hear the artistry – what he’s doing, and what he’s trying to do – but his breathily inarticulate voice isn’t strong enough to carry you over the gap between the two. Continue reading…

(Sub Pop)
He’s a master of mood and melody, but a more pop-facing Ernest Greene needs to let rip a little

Craftsmanship can be underrated. We want musicians to be unfettered geniuses with lightning at their fingertips, not digital coalminers digging grimly for zeroes and ones. Ernest Greene’s Washed Out project was always painstakingly put together, with fuzzily tuneful gems like 2009’s Feel It All Around encouraging chillwave’s horizontal revolution. But it rarely felt crafted, because true craft always disguises itself as inspiration.

Over the years, Greene has tinkered gently with his formula, and this fourth album adds more radio-friendly arrangements on songs like Too Late and Time to Walk Away. Only the multilayered finale, Haunt, really tries something interesting. He remains a brilliant technician of mood and melody, but as he edges closer to pop, Greene’s vocal limitations are accentuated. You hear the artistry – what he’s doing, and what he’s trying to do – but his breathily inarticulate voice isn’t strong enough to carry you over the gap between the two.

Continue reading…


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