Music News

Cut Copy: Zonoscope

Zonoscope is quite a departure from 2008's far-too-brilliant In Ghost Colours. The band pretty much had no choice on the matter. Almost anything similar would pale in comparison -- it's rare to hear a band hit their stride in such a magnificent fashion as Cut Copy did on In Ghost Colours. Zonoscope, as well, is miles away from their bubbly, funky 2004 debut Bright Like Neon Love

But why focus on what Zonoscope isn't? The band has evoked a summer-set mood on the album, something that makes sense right now in Australia yet acts as an unfairly tantalizing reminder that America's spring/summer music festival season is still months away. Once Cut Copy makes their presence known at April's Coachella and May's Sasquatch!, however, Zonoscope just might start making perfect sense.

What the critics are saying:

Pretty Much Amazing: The delicate art of determining an album's track sequence is usually only noticed when the job is utterly botched. A well-sequenced album flows seamlessly from beginning to end, its individual tracks transformed into a unified whole, while a poorly sequenced album sounds like a strung together collection of songs at best, or a disjointed mess at worst. Zonoscope is a prime example of the latter.

BBC Music: While not quite the amazing leap that Cut Copy made from Bright Like Neon Love to In Ghost Colours, Zonoscope is by no means a bad album. But it is one that will probably sound better when wafting across a field during festival season.

Spin: With its lighter-than-air melody and its bouncy, tom-tom-equipped groove, "Take Me Over" reveals Cut Copy's eagerness to graduate from dance-rock cult act to something more universally admired. It's an unabashed bid, in other words, for the sunset slot at Coachella, and it's hardly alone on Zonoscope, which catches Cut Copy in a pop-attuned mode they've only hinted at in the past.

Pitchfork: Compared to the last two albums, Zonoscope has precious little guitar crunch, which makes it hard to even call Cut Copy a dance-rock band anymore. And that's for the best-- not just because that combination seems like a less thrilling prospect in 2011 than perhaps it once did, but also because Cut Copy have the architecture of dance music down perfectly and the confidence to execute the genre's moves with absolute precision.

Zonoscope is out now via Modular.

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Michael Lopez