CD REVIEWS: Four Tet: There Is Love In You

The fifth full-length album from British electronic musician Kieran Hebden (better known as Four Tet), isn’t a dramatic departure from his earlier work. Nor will it disappoint fans of Four Tet’s already well-established oeuvre. The album is barely over 45 minutes long and undemanding enough to not need your full attention. Its sound is minimalistic, evoking the early work of ambient electronic musicians like Aphex Twin, with basic drum lines and Hebden’s signature use of samples from a range of musical genres. The influence of Hebden’s recent collaborations with jazz drummer Steve Reich and electronic producer Burial can be heard, however Hebden’s early use of folk samples remains less pronounced.

The album will doubtless have its detractors, particularly among those hoping Four Tet would move in a new direction. The tracks are mainly instrumental, the nine-minute single “Love Cry” takes half its length to really get going, and the 12-second “Pablo’s Heart” consists of what we can only assume is the sound of a heartbeat. But despite the apparent simplicity of There Is Love In You, there is more going on beneath the surface than meets the eye. Hebden’s thoughtful tracks all project sorrow and melancholy, but also a strange hopefulness¬. From the ethereal buildup of the vocal samples on “Angel Echoes” to the rainy day melody lines in “She Just Likes To Fight,” TILIY is the kind of album you just want to keep listening to.

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