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Avicii – Stories, album review: ‘aims squarely for the Ibiza mainstream’

avicii
Tim Bergling’s latest offering has an awkward heart underneath the whomping house beats

Avicii is Swedish whelp Tim Bergling, whose canny ear for a sample and irresistible feel for dancefloor dynamics have made him a superstar DJ in the league of David Guetta and Calvin Harris.

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He has made bluegrass house a thing and successfully reprogrammed Coldplay on Sky Full of Stars. And yet he affects a weary disdain for his $250,000-a-night Las Vegas stands and complains that electronic dance music has lost its soul. “I’m from a place where we never /openly show our emotion” he laments on the surprisingly brittle Somewhere in Stockholm.

Most of the tunes on his second album aim squarely for the Ibiza mainstream – oontz, oontz , oontz, etc – but still sound like they come from an awkward heart.

Broken Arrows allies a melancholy synth riff of the We Found Love school to a ballad by country superstars the Zac Brown Band; Touch Me feature a bassline so alive, you fear it will lurk under the sofa and jump out at you once the song ends; Sunset Jesus twinkles beguilingly. It’s been emotional, as they say when the lights go up.

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