Chemical Brothers have returned.
While Push That Button leaned heavier on funk and house elements, We Are The Night seems to pull sounds from all corners of the electronic earth and their own minds. There is less opportunity for getting down and more opportunities for opening up and looking inside. The title track “We Are The Night” moves down city streets in fast motion at midnight where lights become beams of white and red; lofty vocal harmonies trail behind the drone of the space ship captain who announce his people’s identity.
The duo are pros at layering bits, bytes and cellular objects, devising concoctions that wouldn’t have occurred to other mix masters. This makes their productions unpredictable at first listen, while also having a signature sound that even to the virgin ear, a trained fan should be able to pick out a CB track that contains that underlying heartbeat that no doubt inspired Tykwer’s Run Lola Run compositions.
The trip, sans the need for any chemical additives (no pun intended), Jamie and James from Klaxons, along with Dev of Lightspeed Champion, dive in on vocal duty for “All Rights Reversed,” which pulses and turns down the highway that’s bound to careen off a cliff at any minute.
Things get really weird (what did they put in their Wheaties?) on “The Salmon Dance,” narrated by Fatlip in a pseudo National Geographic style lesson the life and times of your average salmon. Stay awake kiddies. There will be a pop quiz later.
“Saturate” would be a perfect track to listen to on your iPod when you’re going through the airport and looking out the window as the plane takes off, seeming to provide the perfect soundtrack to people on the move and the flight of wings into a night sky.
A track that has gotten them tons of airplay on BBC is “Do It Again,” which more than the others, carries through the Brothers reputation for electro, funky, deep bass loveliness that fans have come to expect from the duo.
It honestly took a few listens to get into this new one, but as usual, from end to end Chemical Brothers prove that they still have it—and are challenging us with their new tricks of the trade. Turn it up.