Artist of the week: TV on the Radio
Gravitating around the multifaceted talents of vocalist Tunde Adebimpe and multi-instrumentalists David Sitek and Kyp Malone, TV on the Radio rose pretty quickly from a Brooklyn based experimental group of musicians and visual artists to one of the most critically acclaimed bands of the new millennium, yielding praise and collaborations from first-rate figures of the pop world such as David Bowie, Trent Reznor and Massive Attack.
After their unique blend of post-punk, electronics, atmospheric landscapes and crisp soulful vocals generated a fabulous strike of three absolute classics for the alternative rock era (2004’s dense Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes, 2006’s lavish Return to Cookie Mountain and 2008’s crystalline Dear Science), TV on the Radio released in 2011 the surprisingly sunny and mellow Nine Types of Light that definitely alienated some fans who missed their original angst and yearning fueled approach to songwriting.
Seeds, the band’s fifth and new album (and first since the passing of bass player Gerard Smith), is, by far, the glossiest, most clear-eyed and anthemic collection of songs of their career, and possibly the closest thing to a pop album TV on the Radio will ever produce. It is therefore not only the best entry point for newcomers, but also the proof that a rock band can age gracefully and try new things at the same time.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.