REVIEW: The Chemical Brothers – Sometimes I Feel So Deserted

It is now twenty one years since The Dust Brother’s ‘Chemical Beats’.  Over two decades in which the Chemical Brothers (brothers from the same mother) have defined the Big Beat genre.  And time in which the duo have established themselves as the go-to artist for Hollywood.  The Hunger Games, Hanna, Black Swan, Lost in Translation, Vanilla Sky, The Beach and Any Given Sunday to name only a few.

This is deliberate; in 2010 the Chemical Brother’s last release ‘Further’ was accompanied by specially created visuals for each of the tracks.  And Big Beat – typified by break beats, synthesized sounds, distorted guitar riffs and dystopian vocals – has always been the music of the soundtrack.  Raw.  Pulsating.  Infectious.  But accompaniment rather than MAIN EVENT.

So it is no surprise that ‘Sometimes I Feel So Deserted’ ticks along much as ‘Chemical Beats’ once did and ‘Block Rockin’ Beats’ did so famously.  It teeters between distorted paranoia and vocal anthem, like a getaway car for Pharrell Williams driven by the Bloody Beetroots skidding along a Swiss mountain road as they try to shake off the executors of Marvin Gaye’s estate.

The experimentation found in Hanna (a soundtrack that might as well have been called Preludes in Bass) is gone.  But fans will like it.  Critics will mutter about a lack of progress.  And Hollywood producers will wonder why they have neglected Big Beat in favour of dub step for the last five years.  Come July and the release of their new album, we might too.

Written by Messrs. Pseudo and Nym