15 Songs, 41 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Opening with an insistent piano line and vocalist Noémie Wolfs’ reedy alto, “Amalfi” signals a sea change with Hooverphonic’s ninth studio endeavour: built through layers of electric guitars and echoing harmonies it introduces the band’s first album made primarily with analogue instruments. The warm setting particularly suits Wolf’s voice on Reflection’s luxurious ballads, like “Bad Weather”, “Copper (CU)” and “Single Malt”. And yet, torchy, up-tempo pop numbers show the group’s greatest artistic evolution. Tunes like “Wait for a While” and “Devil Kind of Girl” unfold with a mélange of influences from the past several decades—a surf guitar riff here and a Queen-esque harmony there—to make Reflection stunningly sophisticated.

When you pre-order Reflection, “Amalfi” will begin downloading instantly. You will be charged for the track, and the remainder of the album’s cost will be charged separately when it becomes available. An email will remind you to download your copy.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Opening with an insistent piano line and vocalist Noémie Wolfs’ reedy alto, “Amalfi” signals a sea change with Hooverphonic’s ninth studio endeavour: built through layers of electric guitars and echoing harmonies it introduces the band’s first album made primarily with analogue instruments. The warm setting particularly suits Wolf’s voice on Reflection’s luxurious ballads, like “Bad Weather”, “Copper (CU)” and “Single Malt”. And yet, torchy, up-tempo pop numbers show the group’s greatest artistic evolution. Tunes like “Wait for a While” and “Devil Kind of Girl” unfold with a mélange of influences from the past several decades—a surf guitar riff here and a Queen-esque harmony there—to make Reflection stunningly sophisticated.

When you pre-order Reflection, “Amalfi” will begin downloading instantly. You will be charged for the track, and the remainder of the album’s cost will be charged separately when it becomes available. An email will remind you to download your copy.

TITLE TIME

Ratings and Reviews

3.3 out of 5
14 Ratings
14 Ratings
ploodie

Long time fan… but I can't go with them on this one...

… I've listened to the never ending drone of fanboys who want Hooverphonic to "go back to the STEREOPHONIC sound" for years now and rolled my eyes. Every Hooverphonic album has had its own distinct sound and yet there was always a core of cool to it. Even THE NIGHT BEFORE, replacing their long running front woman, they still pulled off a huge win! But this album… I'm just speechless. I can barely bring myself to finish a single listen. AMALFI is a very good track, I'll give them that. But the rest just falls apart. There are glimmers here and there (GRAVITY, COPPER (CU) ) but it's largely misfires. Not a single song lasts longer than 3 minutes… there is nothing to sink into here! Sorry, guys… better luck next time! Shake this one off and get back on track!! You can do it!! My Recommendation - Download AMALFI and enjoy it for the triumph it is, but ignore the rest.

DJ Krusher

Wow!

Im shocked at the low ratings?? Is there a hate campaign I don't know about? This album is awesome!! It's not trip-hop like the old days, it's definitely indie/alternative but its really good! Catchy stuff, I don't have a problem with it at all.

kkishfy

What is this? Really!

I have followed and purchased every Hoverphonic record since the beginning. This new album follows the previous album on a downward spiral, but does so with a big drop!!

We are singing ABC's now? Really??

I am sadly, no longer a fan and the new arrangement doesn't work. Why even call yourselves Hooverphonic? Very disappointed that I lost one of my favorite groups in electro trip/hop, whatever you want to call the genre.

About Hooverphonic

Hooverphonic are a Belgian ambient pop group who initially became known for their moody, playful take on trip-hop during the mid-'90s. Since then, the band's sound has evolved greatly, incorporating psychedelic, pop, and orchestral elements. The group's songs have appeared in numerous advertisements as well as film and television soundtracks, and they have a considerable fan base throughout the world. However, they are superstars in their native Belgium; starting with 1998's Blue Wonder Power Milk, all of their albums (including compilations and live recordings) have hit the Top Ten of the album charts, and five of them have reached the top spot.

Initially known as Hoover, the group was founded in 1995 by guitarist/programmer Alex Callier, keyboardist Frank Duchêne, and guitarist Raymond Geerts. The band cut its first demo with singer Esther Lybeert, and industrial musician Luc Van Acker (Revolting Cocks, Lords of Acid) encouraged the group to shop its music to record labels. Eventually the group signed with Sony, but Lybeert decided to leave the group, so Liesje Sadonius became Hoover's vocalist for the recording of their first album. Hoover made their initial splash contributing the song "2Wicky" (an eerie trip-hop number sampling both Pierre Henry and Isaac Hayes) to the soundtrack of the 1996 Bernardo Bertolucci film Stealing Beauty. The hit was followed by the full-length A New Stereophonic Sound Spectacular, a trippy album filled with breakbeats and samples. By the time the album was issued in America in 1997, the group had changed its name to Hooverphonic in order to avoid confusion with other bands titled Hoover, as well as the American vacuum cleaner manufacturer.

Sadonius left Hooverphonic a short time later, as she was uninterested in touring, and she was replaced by 18-year-old vocalist Geike Arnaert in time to record 1998's Blue Wonder Power Milk. Less eccentric than their debut, the album proved to be a success, with multiple songs featuring in films and advertisements even a decade after the album's release. Duchêne left Hooverphonic, leaving them a trio for 2000's The Magnificent Tree. The disc was even more accessible, and a bigger hit, reaching number two on the Belgian charts. The group wrote the theme song for that year's European Football Championship, which took place in Brussels. They then released the concept album Hooverphonic Presents Jackie Cane, which became their first number one. This was followed by Sit Down and Listen to Hooverphonic, an album recorded live with an orchestra but without an audience. No More Sweet Music, a double CD including a remix disc, was released in 2005.

Hooverphonic left Sony in 2006 in protest of the lack of support from the label, releasing a singles compilation as a contractual obligation. In 2007 they signed with the powerhouse Belgian indie PIAS to release the psychedelic-influenced album The President of the LSD Golf Club, but shortly after its release, Arnaert left the band to pursue a solo career. Undeterred, the band began the search for a replacement. After receiving thousands of applications from all over the world, they finally decided on a young Belgian woman, Noémie Wolfs, who had almost no previous musical experience. Their first album with Wolfs on vocals, entitled The Night Before, was issued in 2010. The album's title track became their highest-charting single yet, reaching number three on the Belgian chart. The release also marked their return to Sony, as well as their shift toward a more mainstream adult contemporary sound.

In 2012, the group released Hooverphonic with Orchestra, which contained newly arranged recordings of previous hits, as well as a cover of Massive Attack's classic "Unfinished Sympathy." The album was a number one hit, and it was followed by the CD/DVD With Orchestra Live, also a chart-topper. The band continued its streak with 2013's Reflection. Wolfs decided to leave the band in 2015. Instead of finding another replacement, Callier and Geerts worked with a revolving cast of guest vocalists for their subsequent recordings and performances. Hooverphonic returned in 2016 with the Europop-leaning In Wonderland, which was yet another number one smash in Belgium. ~ Jason Ankeny & Paul Simpson

ORIGIN
Brussels, Belgium
GENRE
Pop
FORMED
October, 1995

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