Passion Pit
Manners


4.0
excellent

Review

by doug USER (78 Reviews)
January 27th, 2010 | 22 replies


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Passion Pit is like the filling in your éclair, the cheese in your toasty or the cream with your strawberries.

Sweet and scrumptious are two very apt words when describing the sound of Passion Pit. The Boston based quintet has hit the nail on the head with their debut album, Manners with the perfect mix of pop, electro and dance. Manners is a synth bonanza. The beat pulses while the melodies and harmonies soar to the highest of falsettos. Passion Pit is trying to find pop bliss, and they discover it with quite an ease.

Synth-pop is quite a hard art to master, though Passion Pit seem to find it easy, which is exemplified by tracks ‘Little Secret’ and ‘Sleepyhead’. The sound is gorgeous, as the infectious synth work straight away goes to work on ‘Little Secret’ while also using a children’s choir to sing out some of the chorus lines, and what a chorus it is. While ‘Sleepyhead’ is different in its approach, as quite an eerie sounding melody takes hold, until the sparkly synth kicks in again to make one of the best builds you will find in pop music. Lyrics are obviously not Passion Pits main objective, though the theme in the lyrics from ‘Sleepyhead’ conveys quite a strong message, and are open for the listeners interpretation:

“They couldn't think of something to say the day you burst
With all their lions and all their might and all their thirst
They crowd your bedroom like some thoughts wearing thin”


If you like one Passion Pit song, you will basically love every single track, as Manners is just full of electro/pop gold. While some may think that everything being so catchy and sweet may become old over time, it is not the case as Passion Pit’s sound as it is quite unique and different. This is so, as Passion Pit can write a good hook, and they know how to use it. This is exemplified through songs such as 'The Reeling', full of enthusiasm, yet soothing synth beats, you are taken on a delightful journey, with the help of a children's choir giving the backup vocals to a glorious chorus, which all eventually builds into a lovely ending of chopped up synth work and falsetto vocals.

What Passion Pit do well is obviously the pop hook with the added aid of electro stylings, though in some cases they are able to get out of their comfort zone and convey a complete different sound, and they do this so well. 'Moth's Wings' is probably the best example of this, as it begins with a more indie/rock felt guitar, and the piano work makes it sound like the track would fit nice and snug into the middle of an Arcade Fire album. Passion Pit don't stray off their proven electro/pop formula much, but when they do it just works.

While getting many comparisons to artists MGMT, Hot Chip and the like, Passion Pit seem to standout above the rest as they produce a much more enjoyable, listenable and more fun sound than anyone else has really created before. Every song may not have pop – sugary awesomeness like ‘Little Secret’ or ‘Moth’s Wings’, but that doesn’t matter as Passion Pit give a huge amount of enthusiasm and energy into their sound, so that every song has something that the listener will like.



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user ratings (579)
Chart.
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
Caleb McAlpine (3)
A jelly-filled electronic pastry of an album that oozes so many slick hooks that it's probably not s...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah this album rules.

Waior
January 27th 2010


11461 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yes the cheese in my toasty!

Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I love cheese toasty's

Vooligan
January 27th 2010


3541 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Saw these guys yesterday, were pretty cool. Might check this out.

Kiran
Emeritus
January 27th 2010


6002 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I think you spent too much time in this review restating the "sugary awesomeness" and "pop gold" of this, that you didn't quite expand on the points that really give us a feeling of what this sounds like.

For example, look at this paragraph:

"If you like one Passion Pit song, you will basically love every single track, as Manners is just full of electro/pop gold. While some may think that everything being so catchy and sweet may become old over time, it is not the case as Passion Pit’s sound as it is quite unique and the listener will be engaged listen after listen, finding new things in their sound and little twist’s that weren’t so obvious on the first listen through. Passion Pit has really become masters of fruity melodies and vocals that just keep on pushing upward and upward."

Rather than tell us that 'the listener will be engaged listen after listen' through new twists and sounds and moving on to your next point, give us examples of what these hooks are. Say, maybe, the quick-spoken bridge in Let Your Love Grow Tall or the slowed down falsetto in Swimming in the Flood; give the reader a reason to want to listen to this while at the same time giving a general impression of what it sounds like.

Also sweeping statements like "they produce a much more enjoyable, listenable and more fun sound than anyone else has really created before" and "one of the best builds you will find in pop music" should generally be avoided. Statements such as "Passion Pit has really become masters of fruity melodies and vocals that just keep on pushing upward and upward" and "Passion Pit is trying to find pop bliss, and they find that with quite an ease" don't really tell us anything without the points to back it up, of which you generally stated but never expanded on. For instance, you only mentioned the energy and enthusiasm of this album in the last sentence, which I think is a big point to cover because it's one of the values that makes this a really fun album. Before that, someone who hasn't listened to this, will have essentially found out: this has synths.

Basically: try fleshing out your points, when you make statements on what makes this good, use examples to back it up, and avoid the big sweeping statements that are ultimately unsubstantiated.

Hope this helps a little bit.

Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah thanks for that. Admittedly I put very minimal effort into this since I wrote it in about 20
mins.
I will give it a read over etc.


Billy check it out asap.


HectorPector
January 27th 2010


39 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is great. I only got it the other day but is really great!

iunno I liked the review short and straight to teh points!

Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Thanks buddy. Yah man it is really good, hey.

klap
Staff Reviewer
January 27th 2010


10585 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"make light" makes me air drum like nobody's watching

Digging: Charli XCX - Sucker

Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

especially through that middle section

Romulus
January 27th 2010


8447 Comments


I enjoy this from time to time despite the rating

Yotimi
January 27th 2010


6570 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I probably listened to this more than any other album in '09. Moth's Wings and Sleepyhead are too good.

rasputin
January 27th 2010


14555 Comments


album is fun and cheery but doesn't really have any longevity

Foxhound
January 27th 2010


4570 Comments


Man this album is sooo annoying.

Douglas
January 27th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

album is fun and cheery but doesn't really have any longevity

Surprisingly for me it has. I've had it since the release date and I just loved it more with each
listen.


AggravatedYeti
January 27th 2010


7685 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

^ same here.

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2010


20858 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Douglas, are you still writing reviews in 20 minutes!?

Good solid review, but I was going to bring up the points that Kiran did (although not as detailed). I understand that most of the album is a certain way & it was definitely correct for you to state that... But in those cases, it is probably even more important to use a paragraph to concentrate on the variety they do or don't include on the album. Probably more time was needed on maybe a Moths Wings or Swimming In Tne Flood.

Douglas
January 28th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah this is my most hashed review recently, I actually have been putting more effort into others,
though I just wanted to put this up asap for some reason. I am planning on going over it over the
weekend.

EDIT: added an extra paragraph and tidied some other parts up. Hopefully reads a bit better now, gah I
shouldn't have rushed this so much in the first place tbh. Oh Hot Chip review is up if anyone is
interested. Man Electro/pop is my thing at the moment haha

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
January 28th 2010


20858 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah, that's better Dougie.

Douglas
January 28th 2010


9201 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Good to hear.



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