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BEST OF 2018 – TOP 25 LOCAL RELEASES

BEST OF 2018 – TOP 25 LOCAL RELEASES

By Glenn Alderson, Lyndon Chiang, Esmée Colbourne, Heath Fenton, Keir Nicoll, Jennie Orton, Alan Ranta Mitch Ray, Daniel Robichaud, Graeme…

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Klaus – Klaus 

Friday 16th, November 2018 / 17:06
By Christine Leonard 

(Simone Records) 

You know when you hear an old Pet Shop Boys track and it suddenly hits you how much you miss that band? Or, at the very least, how much you miss the days when their Video Hits-worthy singles were lighting up dance floors and the FM dial. Step into the world of Klaus, an electromagnetic supergroup spun from the tangled wires of some of Quebec’s most beloved and promising musicians. As a member of groups such as Karwa and Galaxie, François Lafontaine first found common ground with Joe Grass (Patrick Watson) and drummer Samuel Joly while performing in support of French-Canadian pop singer Marie-Pierre Arthur. Soon the three troubadours forged a plan to start their own musical project and Klaus was born; a 21st century digital boy of a band that takes your vital signs with smooth synths, down tempo beats and a mildly disaffected vocal delivery. Presenting a sleek, streamlined and intuitive application of drum machine and disco keys, the threesome glories in walking the line between the capricious and the considered. This pink and mint pairing is the perfect colour scheme for their eponymous debut on Simone Records, home to rising stars Hubert Lenoir, Camaromance and Ariane Moffatt. The laissez-faire womb of Grass’s recording studio allowed Klaus to explore any weird idea or melodic impulse that came to mind and that unimpeded sense of adventure comes through loud and clear on the ten pop-rock vignettes, they’ve compiled for their introductory release. Shining like wet pavement, the opening track “Neon” signals that you are in for a fun yet refined listening experience. The sway of “Fever” opens the glovebox and pulls out a roadmap of your romantic past, while the skittering playfulness of “Blue Telephone” dials into their White Denim side. Just when you’re getting comfortable with the dreamy pace, Klaus pulls off your sleeping-mask and commands you to check out the sonic scenery. It’s a rare treat when a band knows when to play it shy and when to turn up the sparkle and the threesome achieves that balance with their exotic “Dirty Water” and polyphonic “Pitbull.” It’s hard not to lose yourself in the roller coaster bass movements and digital dashes that run like fault lines through “The Aluminoid.” Meanwhile, the unpredictable “Bad Religion” finds Klaus freefalling through Bowie’s universe, until “Le rêve” parts the curtains and reveals the soft-spoken pursuit of “Natural Design” that lies at the core of Klaus’s being.

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