Skip to content

37. Portishead – The Rip

17/11/2009

37

Before their rebirth in 2008, only some haywire game of indie consequences could have found Portishead writing a science-fiction lullaby for classical guitar and analogue synth. But that’s essentially what The Rip is – a flowing, swelling piece of heart-on-sleeve electronica, rippling around simple arpeggios and hushed, folky singing. It’s a testament to the band’s self-confidence that the entire song sounds so natural, even when eliding such disparate timbres. Even when the big-momma synth arrives to replace the cycling guitar line, it appears over the horizon slowly at first, like some end-of-level boss from an 80s computer game, but then keeps growing until some trick of perspective means it’s all you can hear. Pulsing, mechanical and rippling ritualistically, eventually it becomes all-dominating and the piece fades with just that ceaseless electronic thud. Portishead were always eerie and strangely affecting, but The Rip demonstrated their ability to play their trump card in the most unusual of places.

Advertisements
One Comment leave one →
  1. 02/07/2010 10:44 pm

    Thanks for the comment Sam… love your entry on the song… especially the ‘end-of-level boss’ analogy!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s