Hatchie
Giving the World Away


2.7
average

Review

by don't ask me, I don't know any hallways STAFF
April 26th, 2022 | 132 replies


Release Date: 04/22/2022 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Dream pop: marginally less flat line edition

Hatchie is back, determined as ever to refashion ‘90s dreamgaze tropes into today’s earworms. This comprises a new album, Giving The World Away, and it sees her adjust her approach from her debut Keepsake, now less blissed-out and more synthed-up. This does surprisingly little to change her appeal, likely because she retains the two key pitfalls that proved so obstructive from the get-go. Pitfall the First: the instrumentals occupy a distinctly backing-track function and largely fail to tap into the full scope of their famously rich '90s source texts on any level beyond transitory ear candy. Hatchie's songwriting is economical to a fault, frequently teasing lush tones but subjugating them to demands of the basic pop playbook at every turn. The album's aesthetics are vaguely mostly there, but their function feels overly superficial. Giving The World Away does raise the bar over Keepsake in that it explores a wider range of palettes (jangle pop, gazey noise pop, synth-pop) and backs itself with a more momentous set of beats, but this is largely undermined by Pitfall the Second: Hatchie the vocalist.

A striking contrast to the rest of her retro chic, she disregards the precedent set by the Rachel Goswells, Miki Berenyis and even Hope Sandovals of the world in layering their voices as just one facet of a wider dreamlike canvas, instead placing hers at the fore of both mix and songwriting * la traditional pop vocalist. She ain’t it: her flair, tone, mic presence and inflection are sufficient to back a strong set of songs, but not nearly up to carrying a whole album. Not that it’s entirely her fault; there are enough limp hooks and misgauged performance choices here that the strength of her voice is often neither here nor there. "Take My Hand" mistakes languid drawl for midtempo cool, "The Key" uses surging overdrive as a crutch for interchangeably uninspired melodies, and "The Rhythm" gestures in the vague direction of the dancefloor but struggles to rise from its barstool.

On the other hand, the moments when she comes into her own are frustratingly brief: opener “Lights On” drops an exhilarating chorus, while the easy highlight "Quicksand" skips ahead of Hatchie’s pastiche timeline and dishes out '00s hairbrush diva superstardom in glorious form. Is it unfortunate that the latter's bridge, with its 8 bars of swooned out vocalise chopped and skewed with a tremolo filter, is also by far the most engaging vocal moment on the album? Probably, but it’s also a welcome hint that there might be more in Hatchie's retro crusade than a tiresomely straight-laced set of passé pop songs.




Recent reviews by this author
Hatis Noit AuraCoheed and Cambria Vaxis II: A Window of the Waking Mind
Asian Glow Stalled Flutes, meansParannoul / Asian Glow / sonhos tomam conta Downfall of the Neon Youth
Perfume Genius Ugly SeasonBowery Electric Bowery Electric
user ratings (84)
3.4
great
other reviews of this album
Jesper L. STAFF (3.3)
most of the time i can keep both feet on the ground...

Pizza PUNTRIBUTOR (3.5)
An adventure into the past, travelling by ferry....

AmericanFlagAsh (4.5)
Dream pop, but let's dance...

related reviews

Keepsake
recommended by reviewer
Dream Dolphin Love Eat Alien


Comments:Add a Comment 
JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


48940 Comments

Album Rating: 2.7

progress has been made

JesperL
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


4513 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

nice dig

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


48940 Comments

Album Rating: 2.7

nice dog

AmericanFlagAsh
April 26th 2022


11451 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Disagree with a lot of this review, but neat a review

Digging: Perfume Genius - Ugly Season

parksungjoon
April 26th 2022


44601 Comments


read the one you disagree less with

AmericanFlagAsh
April 26th 2022


11451 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"Hatchie's songwriting is economical to a fault, frequently teasing lush tones but subjugating them to demands of the basic pop playbook at every turn"



Like this is literally what makes it good

anat
Contributing Reviewer
April 26th 2022


4826 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"The Rhythm" gestures in the vague direction of the dancefloor but struggles to rise from its barstool.



nice

Atari
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


27410 Comments

Album Rating: 4.2

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDWgs2cnga0

Pheromone
Contributing Reviewer
April 26th 2022


17606 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

album is a hard 3

TVC15
April 26th 2022


11134 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

*Hard 5 ftfy

daiguit91Kider
April 26th 2022


52 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You need to listen to it more times, everyone I know gives hatchie a 3 or below first time and ends with a 4 or more

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


48940 Comments

Album Rating: 2.7

And for a moment I thought you knew me :[

bloc
April 26th 2022


68641 Comments


2.7 and 3.3? Didn't realize we had two clowns on staff

Digging: Syndrome 81 - Prisons Imaginaires

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


48940 Comments

Album Rating: 2.7

you are a bloc

bloc
April 26th 2022


68641 Comments


Good to hear a modern take on the baggy genre, works really well on this album

Pikazilla
April 26th 2022


23179 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

One thing I know now for sure



If someone like Jesper, who generally digs dreamy and gazey stuff, rates this kind of release fairly low, it's probably very shit

AmericanFlagAsh
April 26th 2022


11451 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Actually does surprise me that Jesper rated this so low, but at least bloc gets it

daiguit91Kider
April 26th 2022


52 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0



"Hatchie's songwriting is economical to a fault, frequently teasing lush tones but subjugating them to demands of the basic pop playbook at every turn"







Like this is literally what makes it good x2



Just want to second what AmericanFlagAsh said.

JesperL
Staff Reviewer
April 26th 2022


4513 Comments

Album Rating: 3.3

yeah like this is a good album but also a frustrating one cuz it hints at sth much betterer

AmericanFlagAsh
April 26th 2022


11451 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Idk it's very much a step up from the debut while still sounding like Hatchie



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2019 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy