Review - Passion Pit - Gossamer
I am glad to see that on their sophomore album, Boston-based (so you already know this is going to be a great review) Passion Pit both haven’t missed a beat and haven’t changed from their original sound. In fact, I find it extremely impressive how similar ‘Gossamer’ sounds to their debut album ‘Manners’, and yet at no point sounds repetitive or recycled.
At times, ‘Gossamer’ sounds much more commercially friendly – though not as though the band sold out, or even really had that in mind. Lead single “Take a Walk” was their highest-charting single to date (#16 on the US alternative songs chart), and it is no wonder why. Passion Pit’s sound is very alternative and unfamiliar, but “Take a Walk” is a good place for first-timers to be introduced to the band, and thus it opens the album.
The rest of the album, in true Passion Pit form, is not as commercial. The fivesome always take electropop in new, exciting directions, and we love them dearly for this. While the rest of the album keeps the same tone and theme of “Take a Walk”, it doesn’t carry the same sound. At times it uses more real instruments to cement the base of a tune (“Love is Greed”), while at other times it is completely electronic and almost sounds like a hyphy remix (“Mirrored Sea”).
Two things are present throughout the album: first, the vocals. Lead singer Michael Angelakos has a high vocal range, and it’s sound is unique to Passion Pit. I swear you could pick him out of an auditory lineup. Also, there is a heavy usage of harmonies on this and their last album. While Angelakos certainly carries the album vocally, you can hear everyone getting in on the fun (“Two Veils to Hide My Face” is an acapella tune, and sounds completely feminine actually).
Second is the overall feeling of happiness. While several of the song titles here convey morose ideas – “Love is Greed”, “Two Veils to Hide My Face”, and “Cry Like a Ghost” – don’t think for a minute that this album is a downer. I am amazed at the group’s ability to somehow make an album that sounds like dancing in the sunshine. ‘Gossamer’ feels weightless and so effortlessly happy you can’t help but smile, and music’s ability to do such a thing should not be overlooked.
Listen to: “Take a Walk”, “I’ll Be Alright”, “On My Way”, and “Two Veils to Hide My Face”