Album Reviews: Supernature (Bonus Track) by GoldfrappJust two albums after their dazzlingly cinematic debut, Felt Mountain, Goldfrapp's transformation from art-pop disciples of John Barry into this generation's Eurythmics is complete. Supernature is 11 tracks of non-stop, glammed-out, trashy, sexy, sticky sweet synth-pop, and if Goldfrapp make it sound easy, that's probably because for them, it is. Will Gregory and Alison Goldfrapp are both extremely talented musicians, and it's hard to shake the feeling, listening to such ridiculously catchy confections as "Fly Me Away" and "Ride a White Horse," that they're slumming it.
Then again, maybe that's the point. On Supernature, even more than on their last album, the superbly sleazy Black Cherry, Goldfrapp have an uncanny knack for picking all the prettiest bits out of the slagheap of '80s synth-pop and its turn-of-the-21st-century counterpart, electroclash. And they're smart enough to dig even deeper, mining T. Rex glam to give leadoff track "Ooh La La" its swagger and evoking the camp of classic British music hall (by way of Queen) on "Satic Chic." They even cop a few of Prince's bump-n-grind synthesizers on the very risque "Slide In."
Through it all, Alison Goldfrapp milks her breathy, sex-kitten falsetto for all its worth -- you'd hardly guess at the range she showed on Felt Mountain, but again, maybe that's the point. The lyrics, too, seem tossed off: "Take me dancing, at the disco/Where you buy your Winnebago," Alison sings nonsensically at the beginning of "Ride a White Horse," but with such come-hither intensity that you're inclined to give her what she wants. Anybody know a good dance club that sells RVs?
There are traces of the Goldfrapp of old on the ballads, especially on the expansive "Time Out From the World," but make no mistake: This band is no longer in the business of making music for sophisticates. Unless those sophisticates are willing to slum it for awhile. -- Andy Hermann
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