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Trouble In Paradise

La Roux

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Album Review

Naming her long-awaited second album Trouble in Paradise might have been tempting fate if La Roux's Elly Jackson hadn't endured plenty of hardships between 2009's self-titled debut and its follow-up. Writer's block, the departure of collaborator Ben Langmaid, panic attacks that left Jackson unable to sing, and extensive recording sessions all delayed her return to the point that "where are they now?" stories seemed more likely than a second album. However, the lasting impact of La Roux's whip-smart synth pop — which became a template for countless other '80s-worshiping acts during Jackson's absence — proved her music could still be relevant five years later. She wastes no time reminding listeners of her charms with Trouble in Paradise's opening tracks: "Uptight Downtown" (which borrows starkly echoing guitars from David Bowie's "Let's Dance") and "Kiss and Not Tell" offer more of "Quicksand" and "Bulletproof"'s cleverly bouncy pop, minus some bite. Elsewhere, Jackson downplays the stiff electronics that made such an intriguing contrast with her emotive singing and lyrics on La Roux. She trades them for a warmer, disco and reggae-inspired sound that shines on "Tropical Chancer"'s electro-calypso hybrid (which also evokes Bananarama's similarly sunburnt and heartbroken "Cruel Summer"). Jackson also uses this softer sound to explore more vulnerable songwriting territory: much of Trouble in Paradise teeters between independence and codependence, whether it's "Cruel Sexuality"'s stifled desire or the boundary setting of "Let Me Down Gently." Jackson's feisty side doesn't resurface until "Silent Partner," where the relentless bassline and expansive length seem to nod to the success La Roux's singles had as dance remixes. With songs like this, Trouble in Paradise proves Jackson is still better than many of her contemporaries when it comes to making fizzy electro-pop.

Customer Reviews

La Roux is officially back!

After five years, La Roux are back for good. There debut album was really the start of my love for music, so I have a lot to thank them for. I had the chance to go and see them in 2013 at an intimate gig in Bristol and was lucky enough to hear four tracks 'Uptight Downtown', 'Kiss and Not Tell', 'Sexotheque' and 'Tropical Chancer'. I can tell you these four tracks they debuted at the concert sounded very good, so there are high hopes that this album is going to sound amazing. Let Me Down Gently is a great relaxing track also. Cannot wait to hear this album in full. Roll on 7th July.

5 Years - Worth the Wait!

Finally new music from the awe inspiringly talented La Roux. Their first album soundtracked my teenage years and this one is looking like it will rival their first!

Love the 80s vibe

Im so loving trouble in paradise, such a good 80s vibe track, definitely a summer album. Welcome back

Biography

Formed: 2006 in London, England

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Meaning "red-haired one" in French, La Roux is the synth pop project of flame-haired singer/songwriter Elly Jackson and keyboardist/producer Ben Langmaid. Before they collaborated, Jackson, the daughter of actress Trudie Goodwin, grew up listening to folk artists and singer/songwriters like Nick Drake and Joni Mitchell, and drew inspiration from their sounds for her early music. However, Jackson's style changed as she got into the rave scene, taking her music in a more electronic direction. Meanwhile,...
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Trouble In Paradise, La Roux
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