If your parents have a box labelled “FORBIDDEN: 80s” hidden deep in the darkness of your attic, go run and get it and put on whatever you find. Tease your hair, put on some leg warmers, slide on some shoulder pads, and enjoy.
Canadian duo Chromeo’s third studio album, Business Casual, may or may not mark the second coming of the decade your parents are trying to forget. It’s safe to say that Business Casual sounds like the lovechild of David Bowie, The Pet Shop Boys, Madonna, Genesis, and Electric Light Orchestra around the height of bouncy synth pop.
The record opens exactly the way it should, with the track “Hot Mess”. The thumping electric bass is paired with the voice of a sultry British woman talking about being… well, a hot mess.
“Don’t Turn the Lights On”, the second single, is a catchy number filled withvelvety vocals and an obnoxious but catchy chorus (“Don’t turn the lights on ’cause tonight I wanna see you in the dark”). Its progression from start to finish is stellar and is probably one of the most fluid tracks on the album.
“When the Night Falls” starts as an assault on the ears for anyone who’s never been exposed to a synth’s full capabilities. It sounds like something that should be paired with a cheesy commercial for the latest high top dance pumps, but it’s fun, fresh, and fantastic to dance to.
The award for most surprising track goes to “J’ai Claqué la Porte”. It opens like a Bowie song and tributes him—inadvertently, of course, but very well.
The electro-pop synth sound is executed with skill and calculation, and the flourishes of female vocals and spontaneous guitar keep the album fresh and fun. If you’re not a dancer, Business Casual will make a dancer out of you.