Let It Be Blue

!!!

Let It Be Blue

“There’s nothing to understand,” sings Nic Offer at the close of !!!’s Let It Be Blue. Far from a statement of nihilism, it’s a profession of faith: a heartfelt testament to the ecstatic mystery of pop music. Since they mixed up punk, funk, and Paul Simon with 2003’s “Me and Giuliani Down by the School Yard,” !!! have been blurring lines in search of dance-floor catharsis, and their ninth album is among their most giddily jumbled records, mixing funky house, electro, New Wave, and more into a sleek, pop-friendly package. There are curveballs: Acoustic opener “Normal People” sounds almost like Elliott Smith; “Man On The Moon” reworks the R.E.M. song via ’90s breakbeat house and Tom Tom Club. Yet it’s all lean, eminently danceable, and proudly unpretentious. Or, as Offer makes clear in “This Is Pop 2”: “This is pop and it’s understood.”

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