Roisin Murphy
Roisin Machine


4.0
excellent

Review

by Colton USER (8 Reviews)
October 9th, 2020 | 104 replies


Release Date: 10/02/2020 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Roisin Murphy sentences you to an hour of dancing

Roisin Murphy’s Roisin Machine falls in line with the recent trend of 80s disco pop inspired music, in a similar style of Dua Lipa and Jessie Ware, but just a bit more colourful and lively. A little less cool and a bit more sweet. Most songs here are built around instantly ear-grabbing, groovy basslines, with simple yet subtlety evolving synth melodies fleshing them out. Everything here is catchy and danceable, but Roisin also manages to distinguish herself from other artists in the genre in a couple of key ways.

One of the most interesting aspects of this album is its willingness to take its time and let songs build slowly, rather than immediately hitting you with everything all at once. With several songs passing the 6 minute mark, it’s remarkable how consistently engaging this album is. It helps that every rhythm and melody on it is catchy as hell, but the use of repetition gives a lot of them a hypnotic quality, which is then disrupted with unexpected sounds and textures. It lulls you into a trance yet still manages to keep you guessing. It can border on repetitive yet it’s never boring. And when the hooks hit, they hit hard. "Shellfish Mademoiselle" is a perfect example of that, as Murphy sings “how dare you sentence me to a lifetime without dancing?” over rapid hand claps and a lively, busy bass melody. A pertinent question for sure.

But while this song is so enjoyable melodically and sonically, it’s also indicative of another quality that makes Murphy’s music stand out from her peers, which is her lyrics. They often revolve around a willingness to be with someone, and to dance, as a lot of pop music does, but they have an introspective aspect to them that gives them some additional substance. On the aforementioned Shellfish Mademoiselle she sings “I know, I know I shouldn’t really be dancing at a time like this. I shouldn’t be able to just block out all the pain.” It’s catchy, feel-good dance music that also explores the guilt associated with feeling that way in such dark times. Whether it’s referencing a specific event in her life or just the state of the world in general right now is unclear, but it makes for a really interesting dynamic between her music and lyrics. Elsewhere on the album she asks herself “never had a broken heart. Am I incapable of love?” Other pop artists have written a thousand songs about having a broken heart or being in love, but Murphy doesn’t even know if she has the ability to experience those things. There is clearly a lot of thought put into certain lyrical passages here, which are then blended with your more standard fare.

At the end of the day, Roisin Machine has the grooves and the production to instantly draw in anyone who’s a fan of this style of electronic pop music, with enough depth for it to set itself apart from anything else. It’ll make you wanna dance but it’ll also make you think a little bit, and that’s a powerful combination in this genre.



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user ratings (70)
3.6
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
Colton
October 9th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I really made the Dua/Jessie comparison in the first sentence eh wow

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
October 9th 2020


24319 Comments


So this is one of the two I should check if I dig a lot the Lipa album, right?

I'll report back.

Digging: Lisa Gerrard and Jules Maxwell - Burn

Colton
October 9th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

sort of like the final evolution of them yeah. but different. check out Shellfish Mademoiselle

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
October 9th 2020


24319 Comments


oh wait this is the voice of Moloko, I see, I see...

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
October 9th 2020


24319 Comments


Checked Shellfish Mademoiselle Colt, didn't like it much tbh. I definitely prefer Lipa, gonna check Jessie Ware too.

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
October 9th 2020


24319 Comments


Checked Spotlight from Jessie, definitely sounds like a more refined, clean version of the 70s disco pop that both Lipa and her are going for, but I still prefer Future Nostalgia. That album clicked with me instantly, while Jessie and Murphy's tracks did not.

Colton
October 9th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

fair enough, Spotlight is a banger so can't fault you there

Zig
October 9th 2020


2282 Comments


First three tracks are really nice. Her best since Overpowered.

AmericanFlagAsh
October 9th 2020


10157 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Thanks for giving this a review! I think what she has done is incredible. Jessie Ware's album is fantastic, but I never really listen to it in full anymore, this however I keep wanting to hear front to back because of all the transitions and build ups.

Digging: St. Vincent - Daddy's Home

Ryus
October 9th 2020


23393 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

murphys law bangs

Digging: Discordance Axis - The Inalienable Dreamless

dedex
Contributing Reviewer
October 9th 2020


7832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

so this is the *other* disco pop record to check?



good rev Colton, I would just put the song titles in quotation marks and the album titles in italics, just for readability.

Sinternet
October 9th 2020


24125 Comments


dont get why you're comparing them when roisin has been doing this for 15 years but eh

Digging: Doss - 4 New Hit Songs

AmericanFlagAsh
October 9th 2020


10157 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Jealousy is second best closer of the year next to Phoebe's I Know the End

AmericanFlagAsh
October 9th 2020


10157 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"dont get why you're comparing them when roisin has been doing this for 15 years but eh"



Nothing Roisin has done has been THIS disco and also fair to compare other disco influenced albums that came out the same year

Colton
October 9th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys, not a genre I’m too familiar with so glad people like the review



@Ash yeah Jealousy is awesome, whole album is pretty consistent, only one I don’t really like is We Got Together



@sint to be fair she made the comparison before me, said she’s coming to “snatch their wigs” lol

Colton
October 9th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Murphy’s Law is for sure a highlight too

Lord(e)Po)))ts
October 10th 2020


66861 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

LOL a COLTON review?!?



at least its a good album

Colton
October 10th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

my nuanced understanding of the intricacies of electronic music made me the perfect man for the job

Lord(e)Po)))ts
October 10th 2020


66861 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

you prolly can't even pronounce her name

Colton
October 10th 2020


9596 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

roy-zin



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