‘That’s why I’m easy. I’m easy like Sunday morning.’ Yup. With its shades of laid-back indie, synthpop and r’n’b, Homeshake’s Fresh Air is indeed the musical equivalent to a bright and lazy Sunday morning in bed, preferably spent with one’s significant other (wink wink nudge nudge).
Pleasantries aside, Homeshake obviously isn’t the standard ItDjents fare. But stepping outside the boundaries is a thing we all love to do every once in a while, and I couldn’t for the life of me imagine a better album for this cause than Fresh Air. So without further ado, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty!
After the brief, looped introduction of “Hello Welcome”, “Call Me Up” is the first actual song on the album; its bubbly synths and trappy beat warmly embrace the high-pitched, warm vocals of Peter Sagar. Revolving around the smooth chorus, in which the narrator vows to be always on call for the woman he serenades, this is a composition Blood Orange would surely approve of, and a perfect gateway into the sonic territory Fresh Air treads.
“Not U”, on the other hand, is way less upbeat than its predecessor, trading in the lighter electronic instrumentation for a wobbly bass synth and towing drums. A repetitive melody is played on top of this rudiment, while Sager mournfully laments a past relationship turned sour to the point of a painful break-up and the eventual feeling of withdrawal inherent to such a situation. The lyrical content syncs up beautifully with the instrumental (as is true for most of the 14 songs on Fresh Air), and thus the words so passionately delivered by Sager become even more relatable.
And now’s the time to get out of bed for a second; “TV Volume” is an open invitation for a slow dance with its scuffing tempo, soulful choir vocals and tasty guitar licks. Grab your sweetheart and give him/her a kiss (or just stare awkwardly at a hand of your choice if your relationship status doesn’t allow for that, I won’t judge). The slow, sensual electronic r’n’b Sager has down to a tee continues on “Khmlwugh”, a relaxing ode both to lovers and getting high together, standing out through the inclusion of female vocals and a drawn-out outro section.
Homeshake’s Fresh Air is 43 minutes of mostly downtempo, chilled-out r’n’b/synthpop; it gracefully tiptoes the fine line between repetition and catchiness. One might find a point in criticism in that regard, but that wouldn’t do the attention to detail which was obviously given during the composition of every single song any justice. Fans of modern r’n’b (like yours truly) will undoubtedly find a lot of enjoyment in this record for quite a while, especially with the summer coming up in a few months.
Notable Tracks: “Every Single Thing”; “Khmlwugh”; “Wrapping Up”
FFO: Teen Daze, Toro Y Moi, The Internet