Perfume Genius

(Copyright © 2012 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )

Learning (2010), 6.5/10
Put Your Back N 2 It (2012), 7/10
Too Bright (2014), 6/10

Perfume Genius, the project of Seattle's pianist and singer-songwriter Mike Hadreas, surfaced with the lo-fi piano-based folk tales of the mini-album Learning (2010), especially Mr Petersen.

Hadreas suddenly endorsed lush arrangements on Put Your Back N 2 It (Matador, 2012) for songs such as the otherworldly dilated AWOL Marine (a song crushed under the sense of imminent apocalypse that it emanates) but his forte remained the way he told his brutal, stirring chronicles of ordinary aberration such as the spare, slow, delicate 17, the harrowing Hood, the utterly dejected, crying All Waters. It was actually the absence of music that enhanced the drama. The very fact of not belonging to any genre or style (just a voice and a piano mourning, muttering, agonizing) coined a new genre.

Too Bright (Matador, 2014), produced by Portishead's Adrian Utley, includes the Abba-esque melodrama Queen and especially Grid, a hybrid of Suicide's Dream Baby Dream and African chanting. Most of the songs are shallow and predictable, but a few employ diversions to stand out, like the operatic psychedelic hymn in the middle of Fool or the metal-machine music that pops up in My Body. The album is reminiscent of mid-period David Bowie, when the pop star was desperately looking for new sounds to revitalize his career.

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(Copyright © 2012 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
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