This week’s most notable release has been Fragrant World, the curiously titled new album from Yeasayer, which came across our desk a couple of weeks back and has been on occasional rotation at Flavorpill central since. Our impressions of the record are that it sounds basically like its predecessor, 2010’s Odd Blood, and thus nothing like the band’s debut, 2007’s All Hour Cymbals. Given the acclaim that their debut received, it’s curious and rather disappointing that Yeasayer have moved away from its wide-eyed eclecticism toward a more conventional sound. Still, they’re hardly the first band to change the sound that brought them to the public’s attention — we’ve put together a selection for your reading delectation after the jump.
Before: Strange world music-influenced eclecticism
After: Identikit Brooklyn “hey, look, we have synths!” stuff
So, yeah, Yeasayer: what happened? Their debut album, 2007’s All-Hour Cymbals, wasn’t for everyone, but it was a pretty fascinating beast: full of strange African rhythms, choirs, and god knows what else. There was a certain ingenuousness to it, like a bunch of kids discovering a heap of music in a hitherto unexplored corner of a record store and deciding to make everything they heard into an album. Since then, though, they’ve settled into making the sort of mildly psychedelic synthpop that it seems compulsory to make if you live in Brooklyn. Sigh.