ALBUM REVIEW: Primal Scream – Chaosmosis | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

Narc. Magazine Online

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First International

Released: 18.03.16





Bobby Gillespie is someone who is quite clearly not comfortable staying in the same place for too long. After all, this is the guy who went from being the enigmatic, baby-faced drummer in The Jesus And Mary Chain, to being the Mercury Prize-grabbing, genre-defying maverick behind Screamadelica in the space of five years. Beginning with Sonic Flower Groove’s post-punky psychedelia in 1987, every single Primal Scream album has been a unique experience, culling elements of dozens of genres to create otherworldly hybrids. Chaosmosis is no exception, it’s a chameleonic devil: it’s electronica, pop, funk, dub, punk, gospel, dance, psychedelia and never, never boring.

The neologism is described by Gillespie as the act of “[absorbing] everything life throws at you, externally and internally, then turning it into an artwork which is your resistance to what’s happening”. Listening to the record proves that this definition is far from hyperbolic; Gillespie and founding member Andrew Innes’ production is a masterful work of art in itself. Opener Trippin’ On Your Love is probably the most traditional Scream song on the record, with fuzzy, tremolo wah-wah riffage and dubby Afrobeats. (Feeling Like A) Demon Again is cut from a far more minimalistic cloth, with stark, synth drones and stiff, anxiously claustrophobic beats. Elsewhere, the immense, Spector-aping wall-of-sound that is 100% Or Nothing featuring a gospel choir chanting mantras giving way to the sparse, folk balladry of Private Wars, with Gillespie crooning amidst a soundscape of mandolin-drone.

All this builds brilliantly upon the ridiculously high standards set by More Light, their 2013 record that was the finest apology for their output in the latter half of the noughties. In conclusion, Chaosmosis is definitive proof that Gillespie still has some truly amazing things to say, in a way that cannot fail to be both restlessly innovative and ridiculously entertaining.

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