This is an album that was recorded directly to a half inch 8-track reelto-reel without the use of any computers.
As a result, it’s an album that feels textural, earthy and in touch with its components.
Oddly enough, the ramshackle, lo-fi result you may expect from an analogue recording is in fact nowhere to be heard – ‘Know Touching’ is a
meticulously executed and interconnected album.
It’s also wraithlike, floating and fragile.
The album carries you along, acting like the soundtrack to a dream-like
flight amongst the clouds. Sore
It’s hazy, dense and wonderfully atmospheric, yet you are never far
away from a pop song.
The vocals are sometimes so intimate that they “whisper in your ear” as it’s aptly described onomatopoeically on ‘Pull My Hair’. Sore
Multifaceted and deeply rewarding, this album drifts seamlessly between pop songs and curious soundscapes.
At the other end of the scale, down where the likes of 2008’s disappointing ‘Everything Is Borrowed’ stews in its misguided,
commercial vibes, are tracks like the almost passable ‘Roof of Your Car’
(a song so breezily aware of its own organ pop heart that it’s most likely to be the album’s lead single), the even more annoyingly chipper ‘Without A Blink’ and the plainly sickening ‘Blip On A Screen’, throughout which Skinner expresses his love for a foetus on a scan.
Skinner remains true to his word today. He said the fifth Streets record would be his last and ‘Computers & Blues’ definitely is.
It’s probably his third best record. It definitely features some of his best tracks this side of ‘A Grand Don’t Come For Free’.
Of course it’s our favourite album of the year – it’s the record we worked hardest at, and, as is often the case, it’s the album that
rewarded that hard work the most.
After all, nothing really good comes easy and in any given year all released albums unwittingly enter a tortoise and hare style race, the slow burners justly beating those that offered a quick fix, usually in the height of the summer when our better judgement is frolicking in a field or on a beach somewhere.
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