Robotanists are dreamscape designers who know how to make a great, great record. Sarah Ellquist, Daniel DeBlanke, Preston Scott Phillips, and Keith Boyarsky comprise the quartet. This is one of the most elegant and well-produced dream-pop releases I have heard in quite a while. This is the same band who created their own rendition of “King of Limbs” with a turnaround time that would make your head spin. There is so much beauty here to digest, so lets dive right in.
Listen To My Favorite Track
Sarah Ellquist’s vocals are gorgeous. They compliment the record as Karin Dreijer Andersson did with The Knife. Robotanists do not rely on electronica as much as Andersson’s projects, but the comparison is definitely there. Songs like the subtle “Terminal A” begin with smooth and stealing spaced out guitars. Where is my mind? There is so much Pixies flowing here (in a good way). Pardon my gushing, but “The Lack Thereof”, in my humble opinion, is the best track on the entire album. It begins with a country twang, transitions into melodic-ballad heaven, and crescendos into spacey bliss that is something you would hear from Philip Glass. The melody snowballs into echoey euphoric vocals that sent chills down my spine. “Plans in Progress” has a lot of chord play that is reminiscent of Radiohead‘s OK Computer or even Amnesiac material – moody bridges that always keep you guessing. I know the band has received a lot of critical analysis saying their sound is similar to Florence & The Machine. There is a big difference when you listen to tracks that share that vague similarity, like, “The Ghost You’re Haunting”. Apparent is a lot more artistic restraint on the band’s part which, in turn, is more avant-garde than Florence’s discography.
I wanted to see more of the orchestration and melodic vibes “The Lack Thereof” delivered for me. The layers in that song and composition were phenomenal. If there was a little more of that orchestrated vigor in “Plans and Progress”, for instance, I would have been a lot more keen on that track.
This is a great album that is full of surprises. As I said earlier, the band reminded me of The Knife in their execution. Their dreamy energy is sexy. They represent such a wide respect for so many genres of music and know how to weave them together. This is much more interesting to me than anything Florence & The Machine have produced and has a smooth sound that make replaying the tracks effortless and enjoyable. With indie being such a broad genre these days, a sensual treat like this is really hard to come across. You wouldn’t want to miss this.
Also check out their take on Radiohead’s King of Limb’s. You can find it here.