Meteors Could Come Down
RIYL: Erykah Badu; Warp Records; the synth from “Welcome to the Machine”
On their seventh album two decades into the game, Toronto electronic searchers LAL’s pandemic record looks inward to radiate Do-It-Together utopianism. Starting at “The Bitter End” and working their way out, it also feels radically grounded in its articulations of time and humanity.
While the hypnotic minimalism of “Still Movements” has sound designer Nicholas Murray set the steady tick of a clock against sparse piano notes and bowed strings to give the track a haunted sense of urgency, as singer/producer Rosina Kazi repeats the title phrase, it also feels like a comforting reminder of the dependability of change.
Like the album title suggests, catastrophe looms, but disruption often brings fantastic scenes: “Meteors could come down / Stardust all around.”
It’s an album about resilience, and LAL finds that in the collective with Kazi’s lyrics often situated in the first-person, then expanding to include universal “you”s and “we”s. Even after “Who You Are” and its alien synthesizer reach their peak, Kazi strips the chorus sentiment down to its essence and the track fades into the ambient hum of the listener’s immediate surroundings: “We can be / We can be.”
With its downtempo cinematic sweep and cosmic fatalism, Meteors Could Come Down finds hope in a moment stripped of capitalism’s routine, extending an open hand to show new searchers the way.
– Tom Beedham