February 06, 2006
Artful Records
Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Experimental Rock

Album Review

If Tempus Fugit pictured Vini Reilly returning to a stripped-down creative womb, Keep Breathing is his Technicolor rebirth. Back are the beats, the samples, the infinite guitar effects, and a more expansive sound in general. Reilly has always been a genre mixer, and here he plays with the usual suspects of folk acoustic guitar, soul vocalists, world music textures, scuzzy beats, sonic explorations, and his own melancholic voice. Where Tempus Fugit felt like a collection of bedroom experimentations, Keep Breathing feels like a fleshed-out cohesive whole with "Helen," "Gun," and "Tuesday" as the introspective trilogy and the rest of the album a journey into eclecticism. "It's Wonderful" is the first standout, an instant Durutti Column classic that looks to the past with its wavering guitar and builds on the genre explorations of Rebellion with its sampled, flanged vocal centerpiece. "Maggie" and "Let Me Tell You Something" provide more magic. The former is a heartbreakingly pretty ode to a deceased love one where Reilly offers gentle harp-like guitar as electronic strings and an uncredited ethereal female voice sways sadly in the background. The latter packs a punch with a repeated soulful sample of the title lyric and an imperative declaration that "you better use what we got, we better get what we want" as trippy beats and Reilly's echoing guitar chimes brightly. Keep Breathing isn't as immediately powerful as Someone Else's Party, but there's no doubt that it's exactly what the Durutti Column want: an inspired, genre-defying set of songs that blend emotions and musical textures into a singular artistic vision. Newcomers might not understand the pervasive sense of sadness, but they'd do well to try.
Tim DiGravina, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Nina
  2. Its Wonderful
  3. Maggie
  4. Helen
  5. Neil
  6. Big Hole
  7. Let Me Tell You Something
  8. Lunch
  9. Gun
  10. Tuesday
  11. Agnus Dei
  12. Waiting
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