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Passion Pit's Latest, 'Gossamer,' Gets Deeply Introspective

Published: Thursday, July 26, 2012

Updated: Thursday, August 9, 2012 14:08

Passion Pit

Gossamer
(Columbia Records)
Grade: B

When Passion Pit released their debut album, Manners, in 2009 they were lumped in with other electro-pop bands such as Phoenix and MGMT, but while those bands excelled, Passion Pit didn’t.

Manners was remixed every which way at clubs and blasted in Urban Outfitters, and now three years later Passion Pit are back with a new sort of album – one that isn’t all sunshine and synthesizers. Gossamer is a cohesive album full of stories that allows front man Michael Angelakos to reveal an extremely personal side of him.

It’s interesting to peek inside the mind of Angelakos, especially as the band recently cancelled several tour dates due to his mental health. Casual fans of the bands might not know, but Angelakos has openly talked about having manic depression. This album reflects his struggles.

Themes of alcoholism and battling demons are scattered throughout the album, which shifts from incredibly modern and creative pop to ‘90s R&B. There album has highs and lows that cancel each other out.

It’s interesting to see such intense subject matter combined with Passion Pit’s signature pop sound. “Cry Like a Ghost” is a story about a woman named Sylvia who stayed by his side during what appears to be a break down. It’s an extremely catchy song with a great beat, but if you stop to listen to the painful lyrics it is quite eye-opening: “But as my body crumbled/ You walked as I just stumbled/ We spoke only of things made in my head/ You never once controlled me/ When all the others told me/ That if I kept on going I’d be dead.”

The album is somewhat hopeful in the end. The song “On My Way” is all about Angelakos promising to beat his demons, and now with this cathartic album,, Passion Pit fans will be able to support him even further.

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