Matador Records. Released September 23rd.
Perfume Genius' third album Too Bright is something of a departure from the slight, delicate arrangements where Mike Hadreas' made his name and it's a progression that has been great to witness, as beautiful and introspective heartbreaking as they are artists need to develop and this is exactly that, an expansion on the intimate nature that wholly made up the first two Perfume Genius records.
"Queen" lets you know what the album is about, expressing outward anger rather than inner pain throughout with a dark, menacing organ and swelling instrumentation bolder and more powerful than ever before. "Grid" is even bigger, an intense, gripping journey awaits listeners as looping beats and abrasive synths introduce Mike's powerful, dramatic vocals, pummeling drums soon enter the fore and you are immediately transfixed and soon all sorts of eerie horns and nightmarish screams petrify and the result is simply mind-blowing.
"Longpip" could soundtrack any sci-fi blockbuster, with a rhythm that makes me thinking I'm playing the Mass Effect games and "My Body" is unnerving and tense, dirty and gripping.
It wouldn't be Perfume Genius without moments that are staggeringly beautiful and "Don't Let Them In" alongside the album closure "All Along" are worth their inclusion, sweetly heartbreaking.
Too Bright is simply an ambitious and triumphant success, a collection of dark, emotive wonder.