Unknown Mortal Orchestra: Multi-Love (Jagjaguwar)

 |   |  <1 min read

Unknown Mortal Orchestra: Multi-Love (Jagjaguwar)

Ruban Nielson's gift for a melodic twist coupled with lyrics which say something hasn't deserted him.

If anything it has deepened and become more soulful and nuanced on this collection which refers to Prince-style soul with a disco bass line (the opener I Can't Keep Checking My Phone), deep funk (the brittle danceable pop of Like Acid Rain), the grandeur of contemporary soundtracks married to an obliquely socio-political lyric (Extreme Wealth and Casual Cruelty) and dreamy falsetto pop (the title track).

There's also broody balladry (the Bacharach-style horn embellishments on Necessary Evil, a standout with its slightly disturbing organ and abrasive guitar part) and much more.

What keeps this diversity coherent is the funky bottom end, Nielson's effortless vocal delivery which often sounds intimate (or annoyed) and the pop economy of these nine, discrete songs.

The notable exception to the brevity is the seven minute Puzzles which pushes the listener into interesting areas from its acoustic framing to schizophrenic funk-rock and increasingly angry tone, then back.

The spirit of classic Prince and Seventies jazz-funk haunts much of this music (no bad thing) but Nielson/UMO twist them into something their own, a kind of musically literate white-boy pop-rock with its feet on the dancefloor and stars in its slightly jaded eyes.  

Share It

Your Comments

Ra - May 25, 2015


lennonish twangs swimming through acid rinced, hazy blue tinged waters.
crunchy rolls punctuating some blaitant casio banjo and a back and forth disco beat.
just my first listen to this song but I can't wait to steep myself in the album.
love their shit!!!

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

!!!: Shake the Shudder (Warp)

!!!: Shake the Shudder (Warp)

Cali-founded band !!! (aka Chk Chk Chk) – now in their natural home of New York's dance clubs – are not so retro in their disco/funk crossover that they are a signpost to the future.... > Read more

Rodney Crowell: The Houston Kid (Sugar Hill)

Rodney Crowell: The Houston Kid (Sugar Hill)

Rodney Crowell's star has been in steady decline since the 80s and now the former son-in-law of Johnny Cash and rockin' country singer-songwriter is on the same minor label as Dolly Parton who... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

GUEST DIRECTOR DAVID TRUEBA from Spain discusses his new film which isn't about John Lennon

GUEST DIRECTOR DAVID TRUEBA from Spain discusses his new film which isn't about John Lennon

The backdrop of my film Living is Easy With Eyes Closed is 1960s Spain. A place full of contradictions, grey, under the control of an authoritative regime, a generation living with... > Read more

DAVID GILMOUR OF PINK FLOYD INTERVIEWED 1988: Us and Them Lawyers

DAVID GILMOUR OF PINK FLOYD INTERVIEWED 1988: Us and Them Lawyers

Rock stars shouldn’t talk this way, not in these well-rounded vowels and carefully constructed, oh-so English sentences. But then, this is David Gilmour from Pink Floyd – and as rock... > Read more