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Royksopp & Robyn “Do It Again” – EP Review

Cooking Vinyl (2014)

Following their glorious collaborations on Royksopp’s Junior (“The Girl & The Robot”) and Robyn’s Body Talk (“None Of Dem”), expectations were understandably high for Do It Again, a five-track EP intended as a stopgap until the Kings and Queen of Nordic electro-pop both release their respective solo albums later this year.

The title track first single, a Discovery-era Daft Punk-esque club banger which perfectly combined the sassiness of the Swedish vixen with the glitchy production of the Norwegian duo, only added to the sense of anticipation.

Sadly, only one other number, the gorgeously bittersweet synth-pop balladry of “Every Little Thing,” achieves the same balance. Indeed, often relegated to the sidelines, Robyn feels more like a guest vocalist on a Royksopp record than an equal half, her contribution to the swirling harder-edged electro of “Sayit” reduced to little more than a few vocal trade-offs with a speak and spell machine, while the ten-minute quietly reflective instrumental “Inside The Idle Hour Club” neglects to feature her signature emotive tones at all.

Epic opener “Monument,” a disorientating blend of throbbing bass, ghostly echoed vocal loops and ambient synths which then segues unexpectedly into an atmospheric slice of smooth jazz, is much more like it, allowing both parties to embrace their experimental streak while still retaining the qualities that have produced some of the 21st Century’s finest melancholic electro.

Do It Again, therefore, undoubtedly contains its fair share of Scandinavian magic. But by only offering a fleeting taster of the dream-team set up promised, it’s hard to shake the feeling that Royksopp and Robyn have wasted this golden opportunity.


 

3 / 5 stars     

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About the Author

on MUSIC IS MY OXYGEN WEEKLY.

Jon O'Brien's love of music began as a six-year-old after becoming bizarrely transfixed with the 80s poodle rock of Heart, Europe and Def Leppard. Switching his attention to pop icon Michael Jackson, he then became addicted to the UK Top 40, becoming a rather pointless walking Wikipedia of chart positions in the process. Driving his poor neighbors up the wall while learning to play the drums as a teen, he toyed with the idea of becoming a musician, but in studying Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, he realized heÕd rather write about music than perform it. Since then, he's written thousands of reviews and biographies on everything from bubblegum pop to death metal, but electronica remains his main passion, with everything from Aphex Twin to Zero 7 in his spare room-consuming record collection. Jon resides in northwest England near Liverpool.

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Posted in: Album Reviews, Electronic Music


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