The Top 50 Albums of the Year… #49 MIAMI HORROR “Illumination”
49. MIAMI HORROR “Illumination”
There’s such a distinct sense of intense growth between Miami Horror’s debut EP from 2008, the short-and-sweet “Bravado”, to this, 2010′s debut album from the now-quartet. “Illumination” is light-years ahead of the game when it comes to glorious, summer-fuelled dancepop that – somewhat criminally – wasn’t the smash release it should have been.
While everybody adorns the likes of the Bag Raiders (who deserve all the accolades they’ve gotten, no denying), Miami Horror’s “Illumination” – somewhat of a concept album that centralises its ideas around light – comes complete with some of the years absolute best songs. First single “Moon Theory” is one of the sincerest and most beautifully crafted pop songs of 2010 (and that very sentiment will be echoed quite predominantly in my upcoming Songs of the Year chart), the spookily brilliant “Echoplex” is like Ladytron in a bright-yellow two-piece bikini, and “Grand Illusion” is what Doctor WHO would sound like if he had a boombox as he walked down Bondi.
There were a lot of reviews in 2010 that likened this albums sound to that Cut Copy and Daft Punk, which – honestly – were lazy and, when it came to the Daft Punk comparison, predictable submissions that somewhat patronised the intelligence behind this record and barely even scraped the musical genius that is Benjamin Plant, the brainchild behind Miami Horror. There’s such a vast selection of sleazy 70′s disco funk, 80′s power-pop that’s not too distant in places to Wham!’s “Club Tropicana“, and 90′s house that slowly edges its way into this swimming-pool-pop collection of proper Summer anthems.
Don’t be surprised if, in five years time, Plant’s producing your favourite pop acts new album. He’s the next Stuart Price, and the sooner someone with a real detailed eye for pop music on a global scale realises this and snaps him up, the better.