Blood Orange - Coastal Grooves


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Coastal Grooves is Devonté Hynes' first official album under the Blood Orange moniker. Devonté Hynes has produced a lot of music. Some for himself: Testicicles, Lightspeed Champion and some for others: Basement Jaxx, Florence & The Machine, Theophilus London, Solange Knowles, Cassie, Diana Vickers. Somewhere in between all of this, Blood Orange was created.

Hynes has been living in New York City for the past three years where he has been concentrating on writing and producing for other artists. He simultaneously worked on songs in his bedroom, compiling them onto mixtapes that he would listen to while traveling around the city at night, letting the city’s nocturnal ecosystem seep into the music in his headphones.

Informed by the equally neon atmosphere of Chris Issack, Billy Idol, 80's Japanese pop such as Yellow magic Orchestra and French singer F.R David, Hynes took the songs that form Coastal Grooves on a trip to the West Coast where he started turning the ideas into an album with producer Ariel Rechtshaid in L.A.

Alongside the music he heard playing in after-hours bars, Hynes drew inspiration from the identity blurring work of transgender icons such as Octavia St Laurent and the playful high-gloss nihilism of Gregg Araki movies. Blood Orange is the music of a seedy yet inspirational New York night time.

As a record it's glaringly reminiscent of past niche musical trends, but sounds so contemporary and original that it lures listeners into a very confused time warp of a listening experience. Hynes’ approach and attack, the timing, and the modernity of the album bridge the gap between intelligent 60s and 70s experimental guitar rock and a more excitable late 70s to early 80s funk. Coastal Grooves is a collection of extremely and extensively well-informed pieces of music, yet with such an array of influences it’s hard to ultimately categorize it fairly.

Heavyweight vinyl produced by Domino Recording Co. in 2011.

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