Review: Adrian Knight – Cheap Love

coverIt’s the way those notes smoosh together; the musical equivalent of moon-eyed desire, played out on an electric piano that makes them glisten under the peripheral wash of slow-sweeping disco strobes. It’s a romantic record, but not of a romance I’ve ever known – too smooth and faultless to bear consideration to anxiety and blundering first date conversation, its shoes and ass shimmering through the pixelated slap of drum machine, and assured strides scooping up every momentary minor key in an embrace of lush, artificially warm resolution. Synths slur like candlelight bending, and Adrian’s voice slides against itself as two hot bath taps of lubricated soul.

He’s a mysterious figure – a dancefloor silhouette – and his melodies predominantly evade the instant gratification of catchy, romantic declaration in favour of weaving, syncopated metaphor; delightful strings of chords twirl me in their arms, organically, unexpectedly, carrying me away and tugging me gently in again. And yet, in spite of its seductive enigma, Cheap Love is undoubtedly a bedroom record. Everything is small in scale, and while its aspirations may daydream into woozy, hot pink cocktail bars, there is an essence of isolation that dips the album’s romantic proficiency in longing, or an intangible fantasy – Knight is forbidden from the nightlife of Lionel Richie by the crimson fog of Cocteau Twins, whispering sweet nothings to a binary wall that never whispers it back.