Grimes – Visions

Album Review by Mark Shukla | 23 Feb 2012
  • Grimes - Visions
Album title: Visions
Artist: Grimes
Label: 4AD
Release date: 12 Mar

“I would say this is my psychedelic new jack swing IDM album,” says Claire Boucher without a trace of irony. She’s not too far off the mark either, considering the righteous grit and swagger of Eight and Circumambient – two tracks that underline just how far the young producer has come in a little over two years.

It’s not that she’s abandoned the shadow and mystery of her earlier work either – in fact, for the most part, Boucher manages to have her cake and eat it, deftly balancing dance beats and a supersaturation of vocal hooks against imperious bass synthesis and ice cold atmospherics.

That said, Visions is not a perfect album; the relentless gymnastic density of Boucher’s multitracked voice can make it an exhausting listen – in much the same way that a Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares album is almost too emotionally draining to get through in one sitting.

Although apt to bewitch the listener with its seductive pop signifiers, this is music that stands up to obsessive scrutiny; each track resonating simultaneously with the pain of loss and the joy of transmutation – the mystical thrill of self expression.

Grimes plays Glasgow Berkeley Suite on 7 May.