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Erasure: Light at the End of the World

Erasure: Light at the End of the World

Desc:CD REVIEW: ARTIST: Erasure
Label:Mute
Format:Album
Media:CD
Genre:Recording

With the chains of love – the very same ones that connected them with mass audiences in their late-’80s alt prime – long since broken (blame the country album … no, the covers one), Andy Bell and Vince Clarke carry on with periodic brushes with brilliance, typically buoyed by the very same synthetic loony-bounce that earned them little respect in their Erasure heyday. But even the diehards would have to agree that for some time there has been something missing from their well-tested synth/gay formula: namely, substance. Light at the End of the World represents a valiant attempt at pulling Andy Bell’s lyrical head out of its posterior and back onto the dance floor – a feat it occasionally succeeds in (“Storm in a Teacup” is a masterstroke about his drunk mother, first single “I Could Fall in Love With You” is an Innocents-style stomper of warm abandon). Unfortunately, the edge largely remains dulled, missing the marks nailed by transcendent hits like “Drama,” “Chorus” and “Stop!” and too often falling into a half-hearted patchwork of unsurprising clichés that suggest duty rather than booty. Still, it kicks the sullied asses of Cowboy and Loveboat easily enough. Deservedly so.

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