Slow Place Like Home: When I See You . . . Ice Cream! – Irish electro-pop has a moment

Fri, Oct 20, 2017, 05:00


When I See You ... Ice Scream!

Slow Place Like Home

Strange Brew


Don’t look now, but Irish-produced electronic pop music is having another moment. Alongside the resurgence of Tiny Magnetic Pets and the continuing thrill-seeking charms of Le Galaxie, we now have the second album from Slow Place Like Home.

The fingers of Donegal-based musician/producer Keith Mannion have been hovering over keyboards for years, and while his follow-up to 2015 debut Romola might not have the same bright-eyed sparkle, there is more than enough proof of Mannion’s ability to spread northern light magic over his signposted influences.

It doesn’t start well, however. Office Dancers suffers from a weak, below-the-mix vocal and an electro shuffle that resembles a New Order cut-off. As the album progresses, the beats get smarter. Phoenix has a lovely ebb and flow to it that deftly teases its inspirations, while Bats, the title track, Shadowcat and Echoes (which features former Whipping Boy Fearghal McKee) are by turn skittish, crafted krautrock and lustrous electro-pop. When Mannion gets it right – as he does on at least half of the album – there’s a firm sense of a musician very close to deserved crossover success.