Dawn Chorus

Jacques Greene

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Dawn Chorus Review

by Paul Simpson

Jacques Greene's second album is intended as a set of post-rave reflections, meant to soundtrack all of the thoughts and sensations taking place as the club shuts down and the partygoers disperse into the morning air to begin the shuttle back home. This is a far cry from a chill-out or comedown album, however, as there's still a bit of energy required to navigate the way back, so these tracks are alert and conscious, yet a bit hazy. The Canadian producer's tracks dwell on simultaneous feelings of joy, pain, regret, and longing, illustrating how they interact with each other. Throughout his decade-long career, Greene has typically chopped up R&B vocal samples in order to help convey these feelings; early singles like 2011's "Another Girl" blended these samples with U.K. garage influences, helping to shape the course of house music for much of the decade. Dawn Chorus is less focused on samples, incorporating more guest vocals and instrumentation, but tracks like "Do It Without You" and "Whenever" bear the hallmarks of Greene's recognizable production style, capturing vocal expressions that contain ecstasy as well as heartache and looping them over stirring rhythms. On "Night Service," Cadence Weapon waxes nostalgic about the hipster club scene of the 2000s over an acid house beat that glows like faded neon, while Sandrine Some recalls gazing at the night sky as a child over the wistful thump of "Stars." Perhaps the album's bittersweet high point is "Let Go," an outpouring of conflicting emotions sung by Rochelle Jordan, along with co-production from Travis Stewart (Machinedrum) and swirling, ethereal cello playing by Oliver Coates. For some of the album's more downtempo cuts, Clams Casino co-produces the dizzy reverie "Drop Location," while Julianna Barwick's ethereal coos float around the starry bass-scape of "Sel." As immaculately crafted as anything else in Greene's catalog, Dawn Chorus is a bleary but vivid journal of the thoughts clouding one's head as morning finally breaks after an earthshaking night out.

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