The recent drama surrounding this record’s leaking and subsequent reactions did threaten to obscure the album itself, with its creator; Bradford Cox being renowned for his incredible generosity and Robert Pollardesque speed of creativity, the theft of his work caused him to change his natural transparent style as executed on his blog, which is now due to this on hiatus. A feeling of mistrust seemed to pervade his message to his fans. However it would seem unlikely that the recriminations of the incident will overshadow Logos as it is another testament to Cox’s burgeoning reputation of being a musician who can conjure music of great beauty and fragility.
Logos begins with a rapid fire of songs which breathe a heavy sense of loss, an almost low key beginning bathed in melancholy and a vague feeling of lost hope. The opener, ‘The Light that Failed’ epitomises this, the track almost trips over itself at times as Cox’s delicate voice is slowly overpowered by a repetitive but evolving soundscape not dissimilar to early Animal Collective works. In ‘An Orchid’ and ‘I know I will escape’ Cox’s voice remains trapped in the music becoming inseparable and instrument like in its tone. Although a greater emotion does enter in to ‘I know I will escape’, frustration with himself or his condition as he repeats, ‘You are a total failure’. The trembling and fractured music puts a greater emphasis on Cox’s faint voice which drifts through these opening tracks sparking clearly at times but fading at others. The arrival of ‘St Echo’ signals a change, a piano led echoing track giving a nod to freedom in its tentative steps is a catalyst much needed to prevent the album falling into a depressive cul-de-sac, acting as a key to increase the tempo of the album it unlocks the door for a possible magnum opus; ‘Quick Canal’.
At just over thirteen minutes long, ‘Quick Canal’ could easily be seen as self indulgent though this would be misguided, it is a train that gathers speed and frequently threatens to derail whilst entrenched in noise it is effortlessly moving and comes to a blissful conclusion. The freedom continues in ‘Avoid the Void’ which is closer to recent offerings from Deerhunter in its beginning though it quickly descends into the dream-like shoegazing slices associated with Atlas Sound debut; ‘Let the blind lead those who can see but cannot feel’. ‘Nocturnal Drivers’ brings forward an electronic edge and sharpness which could be compared to A Sunny Day in Glasgow, though the track rather drifts out rather than imposing on the listener.
The tenderness and ache of the opening tracks still remains seemingly returning in ‘My halo’ which seems to represent a new trapping unlike that of the first half of the album, Cox repeats ‘my orchid turned black’ to end the track as if swamped again. ‘Eros’ flickers with dischord and disappointment turned inward as Cox resounds, ‘I’ve wasted my time’ and ‘Why do people change’. However hope returns in the album closer which is uplifting and leaves the listener wanting more, the story is certainly to be continued. Logos just as Atlas Sound’s debut full length is an engaging listen with a bildungsroman structure to it, though a full maturation doesn’t take place so a raw naivety remains which presents a fragile and lucid quality.
I like it.