‘In The Grace Of Your Love’
I’ve been pretty excited about the new release from NYC punk-funk outfit The Rapture for some time now, having ordered tickets for their Manchester gig months ago. And now here it is, thanks to the band streaming it in an unorthodox fashion the other night, in full, via the web. Part of DFA Records’ “White Out” sessions, the live stream basically consisted of a camera aimed at a record player as it blasted out “In The Grace of Your Love”, and featured some DFA minions dutifully flipping the LP at the necessary points as well as holding up track titles written on white paper. Unfortunately I missed the live stream but luckily it was uploaded to Vimeo and then shared around the internet for any other latecomers like myself.
The album’s lead single, the aptly titled “How Deep is Your Love?”, gave the world some insight into what direction The Rapture were going to take when it was revealed a few months ago. The dancefloor was definitely the intention, as the song created a nightclub vibe in the same vein that James Murphy used to do with the lengthier LCD Soundsystem tracks. The song builds upon a simple repetitive drum clap and piano loop that grows like a monster, complimented by Luke Jenner’s heartfelt vocals, until it reaches its peak and the memorable saxophone freak-out during the final moments.
Upon hearing it, I knew that this album was going to be different to their previous efforts. I absolutely raved over “Pieces of The People We Love” and still listen to it now as often as I did when it came out. That followed their 2nd album “Echoes”, which was equally as amazing. And so I felt some nerves, as I always do when I await an album from one of my most cherished bands (RHCP being the main culprit at this current moment). But I am happy to say that any anxiety I may have had over The Rapture’s 4th long player has bowed its head and left the building.
“In The Grace of Your Love” is an unusual record stylistically, and sounds like it should be listened to in a beach house on a sunny day whilst sipping a large cocktail. “Come Back to Me” is chilled and steady at first, but then takes a dark turn and lurks over a thick bassline before introducing drums and then coming to a close. Its an example of how unpredictable and experimental The Rapture can be. The title track reminds us how well the band can do slow funk numbers, with its brooding angular bassline and raw guitar line, and further proving that the New Yorkers can do moody melancholy just as well as turbo dance-punk.
“Never Die Again” is another example of just how groovy they can be with a few bass notes and the subtle help of a brass section. It’s hard to pick highlights from this album because in my opinion, every track is a joy and offers something even fresher and more different from the last. I’m just so fucking relieved and now have even more reason to look forward to their gig at the Academy on September 7th (as if I didn’t have enough reason anyway!)
If you’re a fan of The Rapture you will love “In The Grace of Your Love” – if you aren’t, but enjoy summery indie-dance, then you should give it a try anyway. Definitely one of my picks of 2011 so far.