Album Reviews

CSS – Planta

on June 10, 2013, 12:00am
CSS+Planta+Cover D
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Sans multi-instrumentalist/producer Adriano Cintra, Brazil’s now all-female CSS decided to pack up their gear and head to Los Angeles to record their fourth full-length endeavor, Planta. This new setting made it easy for the dance-punk collective to maintain their sunny São Paulo disposition while recruiting talent to fill the considerable void of founding member Cintra. Tapping  TV on the Radio guitarist Dave Sitek to serve as producer, the ever-sensual Lovefoxxx and co. have toned down the new rave zeal of their earlier efforts for the refined mayhem of acts like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Santigold — acts who have also formerly enlisted the production talents of Sitek.

A talented multi-instrumentalist himself, Sitek has added emphasis to the bottom end to juxtapose the childlike vocals of Lovefoxxx. Whether seemingly reading from her teenage diary (“Honey”), quipping about the toll of the recession on twenty-somethings (“Frankie Goes to Hollywood”), or growling (“Teenage Tiger Cat”), there’s a charming innocence in Lovefoxxx’s delivery; however, over 40 minutes, her pitch can be as agitating as infantile begging. Just as that boundary is about to be broken, quirky analog runs or lengthy grooves surface as a diversion from the prevailing upper-register.

Rancid’s Tim Armstrong and Beth Ditto of Gossip also support CSS in developing a broader sonic palette. Originally meant as a reggae single, “Hangover” (co-written by Armstrong) lands as an experimental indietronica selection littered with Caribbean brass, digital claps, and liquid bass blips. Ditto’s duet with Lovefoxxx combines with a raw bass line and driving psych-guitar on “Dynamite”  a mid-disc lo-fi gem that is primed to be a dancefloor burner when CSS hit the road this summer. Even among these highs, the pairing of Lovefoxxx and Sitek has resulted in a few highly combustible selections which burn themselves out quickly and with little lasting effect.

Essential Tracks: “Hangover”, “Dynamite”

3 comments

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K. Alice
June 11, 2013 at 11:25 pm

“Sunny São Paulo” did I read right? Sunny!?? My God u foreigns need to study b4 go writting anything based on stereotypes! São Paulo is at the country southeast side and it’s cold!! Not even our summer is hot like north america or europe where summer may reaches feeling of 45º!!! I lived the hell in Toronto at summer and I´ll say, never Brazil is hot like this!! Maximum like 38º n in the south temperatures go less 0º in fall and winter we have some snow be carefull about these stereotypes study more

Janses
June 10, 2013 at 1:05 am

David Sitek is Polish :(

Janses
June 10, 2013 at 12:56 am

Beth Ditto ???? :( where ???

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