Blood Orange - Coastal Grooves (4 stars)

Blood Orange - Coastal Grooves

Electronic soul project from Test-Icicle and Lightspeed Champ Devonte Hynes


Having left his guises as Test-Icicles and Lightspeed Champion behind, serial reinventor Devonte Hynes returns here with a new alias and what he accurately calls his ‘disco Chris Isaak oriental thing.’ While perhaps not perfect from start to finish, Blood Orange is certainly the most satisfying of his three personae to date. The beautiful ‘Sutphin Boulevard’ (recent winner of our Single of the Month award) strides along on a slow, insistent groove that’s part Royksopp and part Massive Attack; ‘Can We Go Inside Now’ is a Lynchian spaghetti western soundtrack over which Hynes insists ‘I was a lonely girl / who grew up fast’; ‘S’Cooled’ and ‘Instantly Blank’ blend lo-fi post-punk with hip hop grooves and the detached android croon of early-80s Bowie. It’s a grower, we suspect, whose poise and individual style will prove timeless.

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