Washed Out – Within and Without

January 18th, 2013
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Washed-Out-Within-And-Without

Chilling ‘em Softly

Merely dropping the name of a genre in front of the words “is dead” is such a lazy form of critique in a music world where classics remain classics and modern releases seem to be pressed on some perceived perishable medium. The internet, as kids call it these days, seems to think the Hipster Runoff-coined “chillwave” is dead, merely because the boom of similar artists existed so blatantly and fashionably from 2009-2010. That’s simply not true, with artists like Toro Y Moi and Slow Magic re-inventing sound in a post-apocalyptic America (the world ended right?). Washed Out is no different, and Within and Without proves lush, “washed out” soundscapes over phat beats is never a bad thing in the huge world of electronic music.

The album quickly starts off with huge, delayed synths in “Eyes Be Closed.” A sprinkle of Tears For Fears, Ernest Green’s whispery, shoegaze vocals and you’re quickly transported to beachside resorts, cut-off shorts and blurry vision. “Amor Fati” is a huge nod to ’90s blissrock group, Chapterhouse, with the uplifting pop stucture and drum beat of the 1991 single “Pearl,” making you reach for that red flannel in your closet. Green does a good job of injecting more of a “songwriter” vibe into this track, focusing more on the song than it’s production, which stands just fine on its own two feet.

“Far Away” and “Before” have somewhat of a sensuality to them, with popping basslines and sexy drumwork. It evokes the same visceral effect found in Green’s first release, Life of Leisure.

“A Dedication” ends the album with Green’s vocals finally pushed to the front and fairly audible. Nods to chamber pop legend Brian Wilson shows that Washed Out knows how to use the sonic space effectively and efficiently. The song also concludes Within and Without with a bittersweet taste in your mouth–an emotional end to the dreamworld evoked in most “chillwave/glo-fi” releases.

Within and Without, although released just a year or two after the initial birth of this accidental/coincidental “genre,” (the overall consensus of artists like Washed Out, Toro Y Moi and Neon Indian is that they were all making similar-sounding music at just about the same time) is a dazzling first full-length by a still-fresh, still-viable force in electronic music.

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By Terence Calacsan Posted in Reviews


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Related Washed Out Content:

High Fidelity
Washed Out – Paracosm

News
Washed Out Signs to Sub Pop Records and Announces Release of New Album
Just Tell Me That You Want Me New Tribute to Fleetwood Mac Featuring The Kills, Washed Out, Craig Wedren with St. Vincent Announced For August 2012 Release
WATCH: Washed Out Release New Lyric Video for Song “Don’t Give Up”
Mogwee Live Official SXSW 2011 Opening Night After Party
Washed Out Announce First Headlining Tour in Support of Within and Without
Launch Festival Announces 2013 Lineup Including Girl Talk, Rocket From the Crypt, Minus the Bear and More
Descendents, Reunite to Headline Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin; More Late Additions
Rhapsody Rocks Austin SXSW 2012 Day Party Announced Featuring Washed Out and Zola Jesus
Washed Out Announces New Album Paracosm Set for August 2013 Release
Maverick Music Festival Announces 2014 Lineup Featuring Psychedelic Furs, SZA, Joy Formidable and More
Listen: “Call It Off, Unreleased Washed Out Song
Firefly Music Festival Announces 2014 Lineup Featuring Foo Fighters, Outkast and Jack Johnson
Sub Pop SXSW 2014 Day Parties ft. Avi Buffalo, Washed Out, Dum Dum Girls
Hype Hotel SXSW 2014 Artists Announced ft. London Grammar, Chromeo, Haerts
Vans House Parties in Brooklyn New York City 2012 Lineup Announced Featuring Washed Out, Turbonegro, Chairlift and More
Dr Martens and FILTER SXSW 2014 Party Announced featuring Band of Skulls, Washed Out, and Sir Sly

Reviews
Washed Out, Live at the El Rey
Washed Out – Within and Without
Sasquatch! Music Festival 2014 Day Two
Cut Copy Give Fans Something to Dance About
Outside Lands Festival Day 1: Beck, Foo Fighters, Die Antwoord
Washed Out live at the Echoplex, July 8, 2011
Washed Out, Live at Sonos Studio

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