On 2014's Love Letters, Joseph Mount has tried to do fresh things in an old-fashioned way, using richer methods of recording and injecting them with tight electronics and experiments in sound. Instead of constructing his music on computers, he used classic, slower techniques that forced him to take his time in the best possible sense. By recording onto tape, he was also forced to think about his music more purely, constructing it with more finesse. Melancholy still lurks in these hooks; loneliness still gleams along their edges. These are songs that carry you up and down in tides of feeling, in waves of pure sound. They also inject modern situations with timeless sentiments.
"The Upsetter" is about having no reception when you want to send a message to someone special, for instance, and about the memory of listening to music when you were young. "Monstrous" is about holding on tight to everything you love, in a world you don't understand. "Reservoir" is about a place near where Mount's parents live, where glittering keyboards mimic "heartbeats drifting together." "Month of Sundays" shimmers its emotions through bright, shining guitars. All show the warmth, richness and depth being added to the Metronomy sound.
New musical spirits inhabit this album, too. "I'm Aquarius" was inspired by Diana Ross and The Supremes' 1969 album, Let the Sunshine In, full of psychedelic atmospheres and gorgeous backing vocal shoop-shoops. Mount nearly left the song behind because he thought it didn't sound like him, before he realized his style was naturally growing and changing. This was also the time to start having new adventures, he quickly realized. "Boy Racers" came next, the spoken-word song he'd always wanted to write (but then ditched the spoken-word part because "it didn't sound very good").
Then came "Call Me," driven by glittering organ lines, and the exhilarating title-track, with a four-to-the-floor beat, skipping between Motown and Northern Soul. These songs go places Metronomy had never been before, and they do so spectacularly, all on a record where old friends take our hands, and lead us somewhere new. Love Letters is a classic electronic pop album which sends its message straight to your heart.