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AAA Music | 23 October 2019

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Maps & Atlases – Beware and Be Grateful

| On 18, Apr 2012

When two years ago Maps & Atlases released Perch Patchwork, their first LP, in spite of crystal clear mastery, they were accused of a too scientific approach to music, favouring mathematical structures rather than the suave pitch of Dave Davison, a splendid hybrid between Peter Gabriel and Justin Vernon.

 

Sophomore album Beware and Be Grateful seems to start from that lesson smoothing the edges of trademark M&A’s sound without perverting its nature. Opening Old & Gray sounds like Foals searching for their soul in a desert where life is sustained only by the tachycardic drumbeats of Chris Hainey and the obsessive piano-guitar duos.

 

It is during the crescendos of the Radio-Ga-Ga-paced Fever that we discover the pop soul of Maps & Atlases. Catchy and classy, the rhythm of this album sticks at the first listening without resulting dull afterwards, instead showing emerging layers of interpretation, thanks to eclectic lyricism and a post-rock touch.

 

Lively and uplifting, Beware and Be Grateful is out via Barsuk Records on 16th April.

Lorenzo Coretti