Love This Giant
Well, this should be good – and you can tell that it wants to be but it’s definitely one of those so-good-on-paper collaboration ideas that it could never live up to the hope/hype in reality. And it doesn’t. Miss St. Vincent has always had a wide-eyed and star-gazing approach/appeal but here she sounds (seems) lost through the wide-eyed wonder of gazing at a star in such close proximity. Her tongue-in-chic sound is lost as she tries to show off a David Byrne influence as being more overt (and crucial to her work) than is actually the case.
Byrne sounds like he’s hanging on to the lifeline that someone young and hip might be offering by allowing him to almost sound like David Byrne again.
The best element of the album is the horn parts, their rise and swell suggests some excitement – the rest of it feels clinical, bored, nonchalant. But the horns also suffocate the record, choking the songs while doing their best to celebrate them and being one of few things to suggest there’s any reason (at all) for celebrating them.
Love This Giant gets a pass mark and maybe some people will love these giants (or one giant and his little helper) enough to suggest/be fooled that this really is a great album. The only thing great about it – that I can hear – is the idea that the shows on offer as a result of this album might offer something/s magical.
Most disappointing for me was that Byrne just feels lost. He’s sleepwalking alongside someone who is all nervous tics and over-breathy and trying so very hard to be the teacher’s pet.
Maybe that’s actually what is so worrying about Love This Giant; the idea, too, that one of these artists might go on to make another really good David Byrne album. And the other will just go on being David Byrne.