LUMP (UK)
LUMP


3.8
excellent

Review

by owl beanie STAFF
June 2nd, 2018 | 30 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: to assimilate is to disintegrate

I’m erring increasingly convinced that LUMP, the fuzzy red character Laura Marling channels her new songs through, is a visual representation of the songwriter’s newfound zaniness. The music videos released in anticipation of this album posit the character as a symbol: Curse of the Contemporary sees Lump graduating the school of Thom Yorke throwdowns in front of a backdrop of shifting settings. In Late to the Flight, the big red yeti is consistently the brightest thing in frame. It glides, shakes and pivots through humdrum scenes (a living room circa 1950, soul-sucking box TV et al) as if emblematic of a free spirit locked in the cage of routine; a stultified animal wishing to leap the fence of his zoo enclosure.

There it is, I guess: the crux of a record swelling with subdued elegance and lovely bits of reprieve. Marling has always written records that you’d take home to your parents, but with Mike Lindsay (Tunng) pulling multiple strings in the background, her songs feel intrepid, less content with introspection -- that tiny storage locker of self -- and more enamoured with dismantling some kind of expected order. Shake Your Shelter is the culmination of said exploratory ideals, Marling kicking up a whirlwind of looped falsetto vocals that end up ricocheting off each other like a chorus of confused and drunken angels. It’s an amazing song, and its scope far exceeds Laura’s solo work. Suppose it’s something like a cathartic exhale that lasts for five and a half minutes.

It plays quite the foil to some other tracks here. Hand Hold Hero, despite the same lithe vocal work, feels quite claustrophobic. Lyrically small-talking and instrumentally jittery, HHH feels emblematic of all the things the duo are inveighing (Lindsay’s presence is strongly felt too; the track is most reminiscent of the busy electronic leanings in Tunng), so as to make these moments of flight as liberating as possible. How can we invest in the protagonist’s quest if we aren’t shown the obstacles they’re faced with" We’re totally invested in Lump’s plight, watching it fight off numbness with two dead and flailing arms.

But mainly because the tones here are wonderful. Am I being insensitive" Selfish" This big and nimble and notably hirsute monster is primarily interesting because he’s illustrated and defined by some wonderful palettes: the Moog synthesisers on Hand Hold Hero undulating ominously amidst clattering percussion, the hollow groove of the bass, the sleepy drone motif tying songs and themes together as though it’s the record’s main menu. Never has there been a thought dedicated to the idea that glitchy English folk music is apt, perfect actually, for broaching our collective anxieties vis-*-vis the death of individuality, but here we are; Marling and Lindsay picking pulchritude out of paranoia like professionals. I think this album is so good for that reason -- the narrative is presented deftly and poetically but sometimes I forget I’m listening to something quite melancholic. I imagine this is the kind of album Fiona Apple would make if she spent a few weeks sleeping on The Books’ couch.

It’s just over thirty minutes, which also accounts for the beguiling ‘credits’ track, but still covers a tonne of ground. Lump is a lot of things, as the credits will explain: Lump is a product. Lump is a performance. Lump is a story. Lump is an anthropomorphic mop. Lump is an album which demarcates the boundaries between the self and the whole, representing escapism ironically through a cyclical structure, provoking the “animal unconscious” by setting the animal in a small space and letting it run rampant. Lump is a symbol. Lump is a symbol. Lump is a symbol…

Lump is a symbol of freedom...



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user ratings (27)
Chart.
3.4
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

blusheditor,comme

Rowan5215
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


40868 Comments


pos for 'pulchritude'

Digging: Earl Sweatshirt - Some Rap Songs

verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

peter piper picked a peck of pulchritudinous pickled peppers

TwigTW
June 2nd 2018


3531 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Laura Marling released one of my favorite albums from last year. This is very different. Still trying to get my head around the change, but I like it.





...and I won't be surprised when the fuzzy red character gets its own Pixar/Disney film.

Digging: The Bathers - Sunpowder

DoofusWainwright
June 2nd 2018


20001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Neg for ‘pulchritude’



What is this the 16th century

verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

ancient assholes absolutely abhor alliteration apparently

verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

sorry doof i hate the word too but i couldn't resist

BlushfulHippocrene
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2659 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

BUMP

Digging: Lil Zubin - Heavy Down Pour

luci
June 2nd 2018


10372 Comments


should i check this if laura marling released my least favorite record of 2017?

verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

yeah this is entirely different to sempa femina

theBoneyKing
June 2nd 2018


15718 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Love the review; love Laura Marling too, though somehow I missed that this was even coming out. Will get to it later in the week.

Digging: Low - Things We Lost in the Fire

DoofusWainwright
June 2nd 2018


20001 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Only spun a few songs from this real quick but it sounded like my thing

luci
June 2nd 2018


10372 Comments


nice writeup! finding this moderately enjoyable. her voice is engaging with folktronica backing

butcherboy
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


9189 Comments


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sj_U6vObUA

great write-up, as always.. will check..

Digging: Sonny Sharrock - Black Woman

Hellscythe
June 2nd 2018


3019 Comments


this looks fucking weird

verdant
Staff Reviewer
June 2nd 2018


2321 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

thanks friends

Ashtiel
June 3rd 2018


221 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

i've only heard *semper femina* and while i loved it i didn't give it a whole lot of time last year but after hearing "late to the flight"...wow. i'm gonna check this out as soon as possible.

Digging: Ex:Re - Ex:Re

Evenoss
June 3rd 2018


261 Comments


Late to the Flight is gorgeous.

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
June 3rd 2018


24249 Comments


lump was limp and lonely and needed a shove

theBoneyKing
June 4th 2018


15718 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Didn’t really enjoy this at all on first go :-/



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