CHON
Homey


4.0
excellent

Review

by Claire USER (39 Reviews)
June 16th, 2017 | 46 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A glass of icy-cold pink lemonade by the beach

At this point, CHON’s identity has been well-established. Throughout the years they’ve cultivated their blend of light-hearted jazzy math rock, the kind that evokes imagery of sun-drenched beaches and sparkling ocean water. And no matter how static such a formula may get, it will remain pleasant at the minimum. Had CHON opted entirely for complacency, Homey would still be an easily digestible album, albeit one leaving very little of an aftertaste.

Initially, it would seem that Homey mostly hits the standard marks of a CHON album. “Sleepy Tea” is just as its title says, a refreshing beverage during an afternoon lull; it’s also the first exposure of the crisp, slightly resonant guitar tone of Homey that slots into the open-sounding production. Curiously, the guitars seem to be mixed a little lower than usual - but this may make more sense as the album goes on. “Waterslide” flows as fluidly as its namesake - it’s the relaxed, breezy track that we’ve come to expect from the band. For the most part, Homey still consists of the customary instrumental pieces that CHON produce, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that; “Checkpoint” inserts some lively soloing that makes me recall some of Plini’s more adventurous moments, “Here and There” finds its groove to a syncopated beat, and “The Space” employs playful pitch-shifting that might be a fun tribute to archetypal space-themed songs. “Continue"” is particularly clever with its quizzical upwards runs, which leave a mark of uncertainty that fits entirely with the question being asked. It’s difficult not to enjoy, at least to some degree, the effortlessly upbeat feel of such tracks; you’d be hard-pressed to find something blatantly wrong with their core.

But that’s not it, of course. On Homey, CHON experiment on four particular tracks, each with a featured artist or two. These are songs which are decidedly outside of habitual territory: unusually, they are driven by electronic beats, and the guitars often stand aside to provide support to the glitchy synthetic landscape. “Berry Street” (feat. GoYama) and “Feel This Way” (feat. Giraffage) are sample-centred, whereas “Nayhoo” (feat. Masego & Lophile) has dedicated verses; “Glitch” (feat. ROM) is the only instrumental piece out of the four. I’m particularly fond of “Nayhoo” and its vocal presence - it’s an extra touch of sensuality that came as a surprise to me on my first listen. The fact that these tracks fit coherently into Homey should count as a success for CHON - they’re stylistically distinct, veering into the realms of hip-hop, trip-hop and R&B, yet they seamlessly continue the atmosphere of the rest of the album. These “unconventional” tracks are strategically scattered throughout Homey to provide variety, and I think they work: CHON’s core principles of songwriting are still intact, but they have now been applied in a way that demonstrates flexibility.

The album artwork of Homey encapsulates it well: it’s warm and sunny, inviting, and not without particular irregularities that happen to work in its favour. In an alternative universe this could have been nothing more than easy-going music with just the right amount of complexity to prevent it from immediately going stale - refined carbohydrates with sprinkles, so to speak. CHON could have chosen to pursue the path of simple pleasures, but they’ve thrown in new ingredients into the mix and it’s more than sweet.



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user ratings (129)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
TundraL5Z (4)
Chill at the Homey's table BRAH!...


Comments:Add a Comment 
BurnedBlack606
June 16th 2017


508 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nice review! I'm really digging No Signal

Prancer
June 16th 2017


502 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nice review. I really enjoyed Checkpoint.

iChuckles
June 16th 2017


248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great, great album. Not a single bad tune. "Feel This Way" has summer written all over it.

butcherboy
Contributing Reviewer
June 16th 2017


5971 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

flimsy summer cafe patio music.. review is lovely though, as always..

JS19
June 16th 2017


6055 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This boring agreed - it's like someone forgot to have fun while making it

Digging: Sleeping at Last - Atlas - Space 2

clavier
June 16th 2017


470 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks everyone. In the end, CHON do as they do - I personally gravitate towards weightier instrumental outlets, but this felt undeniably pleasant for me.

JS19
June 16th 2017


6055 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Check my dig instead

verdant
Contributing Reviewer
June 16th 2017


1904 Comments


pos'd. the two guitarists have always blown me away. the riffs are so intricate and the tones are so clean so there's no way they can hide any of their mistakes

clavier
June 16th 2017


470 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Will do, JS - The Speed of Sound in Seawater as a related band drew me in there.



Thanks LandDiving!

DinosaurJones
June 16th 2017


6601 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They can tear it up, I think they just prefer their own style.



They jammed with Thom Erak a bunch. There's a few videos of ChonTroy (Fall of Troy + CHON) floating around.

Digging: The Dear Hunter - All Is As All Should Be

Drummerboy123
June 16th 2017


3020 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Damn I thought the cover artwork for my music was saturated, it's like it's been put through 50 filters.



Album is nice, nothing special but it knows what it is and does it well. No Signal is my fave, pure summer jam. I like the electronic parts too, adds a lot of chill to the album.

Digging: Glassjaw - Material Control

furpa
June 16th 2017


402 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Solid review, pos.



Though personally, I can't stand the four "outlier" tracks. I can't make it through Nayhoo or Feel This Way without cringing my way into oblivion lol.

pizzamachine
June 16th 2017


13480 Comments


Pos'd! Good job😊

kentishh
June 16th 2017


32 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nathan has taken a massive step up, he is dropping some crazy beats all over this

Launch
June 16th 2017


28 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Checkpoint, The Space, Waterslide, and Continue are all great. I can't really say I'm super enthused by the inclusion of the electronic songs, but I suppose that they don't detract from the quality of the album too much. They do indeed fit right in between the tracks and provide a cute respite, but I know for a fact I will never return to these songs if I am to listen to this album in anything but its entirety.

DinosaurJones
June 16th 2017


6601 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nathan also does a sick scooter bunny hop.

JohnDillinger
June 16th 2017


220 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm really digging this so far, might be their best release since the debut.

TalonsOfFire
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2017


16934 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7 | Sound Off

Really great review, pos'd. Very enjoyable album.

Digging: Tom Rogerson with Brian Eno - Finding Shore

clavier
June 16th 2017


470 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks, I think it was pretty smart of Chon to drop this album around the beginning of summer.

TalonsOfFire
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2017


16934 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7 | Sound Off

Yeah this and After Laughter by Paramore are among the best summer albums recently released.



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