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Boomkat Product Review:
Homespun electronic pop music has proved far more popular in the last few years than most of us probably expected. Panda Bear, Atlas Sound, even the expanded Animal Collective have all had unexpected hits with records that sounded like they were the result of more than a few cups of tea and Digestive biscuits in the home studio and that’s no bad thing. Banjo or Freakout (aka Alessio Natalizia) is hardly a newcomer to the scene having released a slew of EPs and being part of both Kompakt’s Walls and Italian post-punkers Disco Drive, but this self titled missive is his debut solo album. It shows that he’s taken his time on it too; clearly influenced by electronic music, this passion forms the backbone of a collection of dreamy, hazy indie pop. Somehow I’m reminded of The Wedding Present or Teenage Fanclub, but this isn’t pastiche, rather I can hear the shimmer of the 90s passed through a veritable plethora of effects and the result is electrifying. Just check album highlight ‘Idiot Rain’ with its post-Radiohead echoing beat that gradually builds into a noisy, synth-laced chorus perfectly primed to have you humming along on the way to work. And this is the essence of the album; something homespun and unpretentious, something steeped in nostalgia but totally in tune with current trends. Natalizia has the balance absolutely right; all we can do is let ourselves be taken along for the ride.