Hot Chip: One Life Stand, in Nothing Not New

Welcome to "Nothing Not New," a yearlong project in which New Times editorial operations manager Jay Bennett, a 40-year-old music fan and musician, will listen only to music released in 2010. Each Monday through Friday, he will listen to one new record (no best ofs, reissues, or concert recordings) and write about it. Why? Because in the words of his editor, Martin Cizmar, he suffers from "aesthetic atrophy," a wasting away of one's ability to embrace new and different music as one ages. Read more about this all-too-common ailment here.

Artist: Hot Chip
Title: One Life Stand
Release date: February 9, 2010
Label: Astralwerks
As usual, I'm late to the party. I guess this band Hot Chip is supposed to be the shit. I'd never heard them before, and now that I have heard their new record, One Life Stand, I have to say it's not really my cup of tea. But if I had to drink a cup of tea like this, I guess I could do a lot worse than Hot Chip. There's a lot to like about this record.

First and first foremost, even though they appear dressed up like an electro-pop hipster band,  the brains behind Hot Chip are classicists at heart. Despite the drum machines, synthed-up arrangements, and dance beats, many of the tunes are simply the result of a strong sense of tradition and popular songcraft. 

If you like non-aggressive dance music, understated melodies, a singer that sounds, to me, a lot like Boy George, and wholly non-threatening electropop/soul sound, you'd probably really, really like Hot Chip.

Best song: "Hand Me Down Your Love," a great nod to blue-eyed soul.
Rotation: Medium.
Deja vu: Culture Club 
I'd rather listen to: Yo La Tengo's Electro-Pura
Grade: B+

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