New Order: Lost Sirens

20 Oct


Maybe it’s just the derivative nature of the industry today, but with Lost Sirens, New Order seem just as comfortable among the 80s-derived four chord clubby electro pop of the now as they did among the 80s-derived guitar driven rock of the early 2000s. And really, of course they should — they were one of the first acts to merge these styles when they were actually new. The end result of this in Sirens is an album that seems to marry the band’s signature interplay of electronic pop and thoughtfully unadorned intertwining guitar melodies with the more simplified song structures that have come to dominate the pop zeitgeist.

Though the end result of this is seamless, it isn’t always pleasant. This was immediately apparent in the contrast between the album’s first two tracks, “I’ll Stay With You” and “Sugarcane”, the first of which was thoroughly repeatable, and the second of which was insipid and bordered on annoying. The rest of the album works with varying degrees of success within the range of styles set out in the first two tracks.  Here, the old maxim of personal taste standing even more firm than is usual, given New Order’s knack for both consistency and (paradoxically) timeliness. If you like New Order, and can appreciate contemporary electro-pop, you will find something to like, and maybe even love on Sirens. If, however, both this band and this moment in music haven’t been to your taste so far, you’ll find no pleasant surprises here.

By Camilo Diaz-Pino


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