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Listen to Ian Birnam's thoughts on Bibio's latest album.

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The fifth album from British music producer Bibio oddly manages to both soothe and assault the listener. While Mind Bokeh is a decent listen for a night where you're in a "higher" state of mind, the album eventually devolves into repetition, an endless drone of pops and glitches.

Some of Bokeh incorporates such a multitude of sounds that it comes off as an unpleasant mesh rather than the desired harmonious mixture. The electric glitches and hisses tend to distract from the accompanying strings, horns and bass that attempt to give songs some kind of progression. Instead of leading the album forward in some electronic flow, these tracks tend to give the impression that Bokeh should merely provide peculiar background beats to a trippy stoner cartoon.

However, Bokeh has a few redeeming tracks that save the album from becoming forever stranded in electric-twitch hell. For example, "Light Sleep" melds into the symphonic bliss that the aforementioned attempted to obtain. The funky guitars, upbeat synths and soulful vocals jog the mind temporarily back into reality from the bizarre dream realm. Bibio shines here as a DJ whose sampling and scratching produce intricate beats, grasping the listener's attention without buzzing eardrums.

Although Bibio is experimenting with a more electronic sound in Bokeh, it's a hit or miss with each new song. Bokeh will either transport you to a realm of jerking noise or a world of groovy tunes. However, neither flow together to create a significant, continuous concept. Although the album dabbles in appealing beats, the awkward glitches wearily dominate as the album drones on into a banal, dreary jumble.

Contact Ian at [email protected]

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