For anyone who has never heard Dirty Projector’s music, an advisory is in order. The band’s six members, interchanging various times throughout their 16-year career, create a certainly “unorthodox” production. Lead singer David Longstreth’s jumpy vocals, the siren’s harmonies of Maia Friedman, Felicia Douglass, and Kristen Slipp, and peculiar instrument choices make a Dirty Projectors song very clear to identify. However, what is often written off as “weird” by first-time listeners, heartily deserves reconsideration. It’s easy to say the music sounds random, unsteady, and unpredictable. Though, what makes the sound so sophisticated, is finding the tiny strings of organization put underneath. Production is advanced far beyond their genre dub, turning complicated arrangements of instrumental arbitration into groundbreaking redefinitions of “indie/alternative”. With that being the case, expectations are high for the band’s eighth studio album. After seeing members come and go, watching record directions play around, and even witnessing a joint album with the legendary Björk, Dirty Projectors is not in line to release a weak album.
Unfortunately, in spite of the previous praise, July release “Lamp Lit Prose” meets standards but does not exceed. Right from the starting gate, Longstreth’s quirky talents burst on scene. Unusual instruments drop in with no forewarning, and the half-pop/half-alternative structural arrangements spell out vivid production. The album mostly rolls on this way until the end. Put quite frankly, it is just another Dirty Projectors album. Of course, such dazzling work elicits nothing to pout about, but there are hardly any new moves being taken.
If anything, the highlights of the album are “I Feel Energy” and one of similar sound “[I Wanna] Feel It All”. “I Feel Energy”, featuring the underground talents of Empress Of, is particularly amazing for its bold, grand presence that maintains a gentle, jazzy consistency. The album ends with “Feel it All”, also holding a delicate jazzy balance with Dirty Projector idiosyncrasy. All in all, give Dirty Projectors your love, and give this album a taste. It’s worth checking out their collaboration with such names as Empress Of, Haim, and Dear Nora.