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Music  |  Reviews

These New Puritans: Hidden

[Domino]

March 1, 2010  |  9:00am
These New Puritans: <em>Hidden</em>

British foursome gets wonderfully bizarre on second album

You’ve heard music like this before, just not all in the same place. Hidden somehow synthesizes the concussive guitars and delirious chants of Liars, the cinematic industrial churn of Nine Inch Nails, brainy Reichian pattern music, Timbaland’s spacey snap, and the moody winds and horns of composer Benjamin Britten. The disparate elements—cheap dance presets and six-foot Japanese drums, intricate Foley sound effects (the sort used in radio dramas), blitzkrieg guitars and springy synths, choral arrangements and angelic pianos—all interlock seamlessly.

Seldom have classical delicacy, rock attitude and pop vitality coexisted with such improbable ease. On “Three-Thousand,” a Suspiria-like ostinato and depth-charge bass blaze a path of destruction, while “Hologram” is gentle and buoyant. The ceremonially pounding madness of “We Want War” sums it up in spirit—a phantasmagorical call to arms.

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