Yeasayer: Erotic Reruns
Yeasayer see your social unrest, and they raise your groove. The Brooklyn trio began crafting their fifth LP in late 2016, stewing in disillusion after a divisive presidential election—but even at its most paranoid or subtly dystopian, Erotic Reruns exudes a sense of kaleidoscopic escapism. Take “Let Me Listen in on You,” on which co-frontman Anand Wilder adds a sugary spin to our modern-day surveillance state. “I’d like to help you, but my hands are tied,” he croons over a feathery strings and acoustic strums. “Don’t look so nervous—you’ve got nothing to hide.” They underscore that contrast more boldly on the prog-pop singalong “24-Hour Hateful Live!,” an observation of political “propaganda” and nuclear countdowns—all set to Ira Wolf Tuton’s maniacally funky bass and a chorus of honking, heartening saxophones. That darkness lurks behind most of the album’s trap doors, but the doom and gloom often hovers like a phantom, barely perceptible until you look for it. “I’ll Kiss You Tonight,” built on a snappy drum pattern and palm-muted guitar, feels like a confession of undying love—and then the dread kicks in. “I’ll be OK,” Wilder sings. “This must be a faint cue/ And I can do this every day/ Even though I hate you.” Those gloomy edges only shine more light on the hooks, of which there are an excess: Erotic Reruns peaks with closer “Fluttering in the Floodlights,” a barrage of percolating synths and wordless falsetto swoops. Our collective demise can wait until another day—it’s time to dance.