"A French electronic duo," someone might say, and the immediate impression is that the next Daft Punk has come into town, or perhaps the next Air. The feeling with Principles of Geometry is more the latter than the former, though -- and they aren't trying to be much like Air, either. Instead, the two-piece seems to be interested in combining the meditative, uplifting drive of a group like Mogwai (consider how the opening tones of "Arp Center" suggest the way the Scottish band similarly starts off many of its numbers with the calmest of introductions) with the glitch-laden bursts and twinkling melodies of countless numbers of laptop acts. It's a slightly unexpected but still effective combination, and if Principles of Geometry are as yet working on finding their own individual way, this self-titled debut has much going for it, with brooding, dark backgrounds looming behind more hyperactive, up-front rhythms and melodies. Generally alternating between shorter and longer songs -- at nearly eight minutes "Kopob Ingo" is something of a prog epic of sorts, probably by intent -- the album is still ultimately more an initial calling card, and after a bit starts to feel a bit of a piece throughout. The unexpected serves them well, as the sudden samples of hip-hop MCs cutting through the mix of "Wendy Forest" demonstrate, adding dynamics and tension to their work. The chopped-up and reused piano on "Omagh" has a similar effect, becoming both a centerpiece to the song and a regularly revamped extra twinge of chaos. Elsewhere, the hints of older synth sounds suggest murkier electronic artwork waters of three decades past, and while often charming, the musicians at points hit a groove only to do little with it, as on "Black Barn." Still, the seeds are potentially in place for something more down the way.
AllMusic Review by Ned Raggett