♫♪  Ratatat - “Abrasive”

Ratatat are a band who, when you were between the ages of 18 and 22, were a really sick “indie electronic” band. Their self-titled debut, which came out 11 years ago (!), sounded like nothing else at the time. I saw them live in 2008, and “Seventeen Years” blew away then just as it did three years prior, when I first heard it. After their solid follow-up Classics, which actually might be better than the first LP, they dropped LPs 3 and 4, which were a big ol’ helping of meh. What once sounded fresh, crisp, and inspired quickly gave way to diminished returns over the course of those last two records. In the five years since LP4 no one would be mistaken in thinking the band had quietly called it quits, as both Evan Mast and Mike Stroud seemed as disinterested in maintaining Ratatat as the rest of were in hearing new material.

Alas, the band does indeed have a new record coming out in July, Magnifique, and the new song “Abrasive” has been given a video. The song and the video, apparently made of hand drawings by Mast (aka E*vax), is a big shrug of a “comeback” for these guys. It sounds like a Phoenix instrumental, meaning “Abrasive” is pretty half-baked and, as the second single for the new record, doesn’t inspire much confidence in what else we’ll hear from Magnifique. I don’t know, maybe Ratatat still appeals to college sophomores who are totally “into music,” unlike the other plebs trolling the dorm. Maybe it still appeals to people other than me, but when your entire discography mines the same trick that was used to death on your first record, I’m as excited about this record as I am about a new Strokes or Interpol record.

Magnifique is out July 17, via XL, blah, blah, blah.

• Ratatat: http://www.ratatatmusic.com
• XL Recordings: http://www.xlrecordings.com

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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