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Album Review: Karen O & Danger Mouse - Lux Prima

13 March 2019 | 11:38 am | Guido Farnell

"As a duo, Karen O and Danger Mouse exhibit a refined pop sensibility, each song laden with accessible hooks to reel in loads of listeners."

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Longtime admirers of each other’s work, Karen O and Danger Mouse find themselves releasing the fruits of their first collaboration. Surprisingly, Danger Mouse situates Karen O’s vocals in a luscious mix of electronica and orchestral arrangements that have a lot of cinematic intent. The title track comes on like an introduction to a spaghetti western flecked with subtle cosmic psychedelics. In this context, Karen O is unable to rock out, Yeah Yeah Yeahs style. Rather, at times, this album feels like she’s guesting on an Air album. This is perhaps best exemplified by the aqueous tones of Drown which dreamily drift like something that could have featured on the soundtrack to The Virgin Suicides. Similarly, the breezy skipping beats and sweet melodies of Ministry create light feel-good vibes.

The cinematic aspirations of this album will leave you feeling that these songs belong to a narrative which isn’t quite articulated. The lead single Woman comes with an insistent sixties Motown stomp as she reflects on femininity. As a duo, Karen O and Danger Mouse exhibit a refined pop sensibility, each song laden with accessible hooks to reel in loads of listeners. Lux Prima is a delightful swirl of refined pop confection to be savoured.