Joe Goddard - Harvest Festival

Joe Goddard is the one from Hot Chip that looks like a geography teacher. Actually, they all look like geography teachers in Hot Chip. He’s the one with the beard that looks a bit like Kevin Godley. Yes, you know the one.

Despite being part of the production team for the Little Boots debut he’s also found the time to put together a solo album. After locking himself in his bedroom whilst the electricity meter span round like a comedy bow-tie, Joe emerged with Harvest Festival. But is it a bountiful crop or a vat of slurry?

The good news is that these are all fairly decent tracks in their own right. Concerns that it might sound like Hot Chip with its quorum on strike are fortunately dismissed early on, with the bulk of the material consisting of competently sequenced synths. Ticking the boxes entitled “squelchy bits” and “robotic vocals”, it visits several genres without leaping out of his comfort zone. It’s apparent that he knows his delay from his oscillator and hasn’t accidently wired up the fridge-freezer to the cat.

On paper this might have seemed like a good idea but in practice it all comes out as a fairly boring collection. It doesn’t really strive to do anything exciting and it’s difficult to find anything here to raise more than a “meh”. Those wanting a more interesting electronic bounty would do well drive their tractors down the fields occupied by Luke Vibert or the Aphex Twin. Their crops are far more diverse and exciting.

The warning that eating this much fruit in one sitting will lead to tummy ache rings true. After a full twelve course fruit-fest there is little desire to indulge again.



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