Deeply ‘60s ’til the trance track, but somehow less liberating than that sounds
With an echo-laden stacking of choral harmonies, Densmoresque swashes of ride cymbal and the faint bwirl of a mellotron, the majority of the songs on Caribou’s latest make a bee-line for the lysergic depth of Aquarian ’60s pop. While there are occasionally sonic touches that locate the album in the digital era (such as the vocal loop on the otherwise intensely Beach Boy-ish “She’s the One” or the synth-built drums on “Irene” or the techno-throb departure of “Niobe”), the severity of the album’s genre jump is a bit off-putting even if the results are, on a sonic level, gorgeous. In moments, though, Caribou auteur Dan Snaith maps out an interesting back channel between My Bloody Valentine, Paul van Dyk, Alan Parsons and the cast of Hair. Andorra belongs on a hip continuum but something about it still feels slightly cold—it’s a druggy album that’s too precise to be made with drugs, a lush album that’s too filigreed to be emotional.