TV On The Radio – Nine Types Of Light (2011)

Share this:

by Tom Johnson

It’s hard not to wonder how bassist Gerard Smith’s fight with cancer during the recording of Nine Types of Light affected the group. After all, the end result is a decidedly different affair than past TV On The Radio efforts, sounding all the more mature and, admittedly, somewhat somber.

Light is darker and quieter than some TV fans might be expecting. Those looking for an album filled with more in the vein of “Wolf Like Me” and “I Was a Lover” might be in for a disappointment. Moments reflect songs like those, such as “Repetition’s” staccato rap and the hyped-up dancefloor drive of “No Future Shock,” but the album’s real power comes in its mid-tempo material like opener “Second Song,” the middle-Eastern tinged “You,” and the ethereal, Asian-influenced “Killer Crane.” The overall effect is an album more driven by soul and heritage than anything in their past – and it’s all the better for it.

An abrupt change of direction from an established act such as TV On The Radio may puzzle some fans. Given time, they may realize all of the elements that they enjoyed in earlier albums are still there, but filtered and spread out a bit more. While Nine Types Of Light lacks the extreme high points of their earlier works, it benefits from being a better overall experience. It is a grown-up TV On The Radio that crafted this album, a band that has had to face the worst while putting it together. The music has steeped in that sobering experience, not to bring listeners down, but to involve them more deeply. While it may prove perplexing at first, time may just show that this is the album that continues to provide with enriching, rewarding experiences.

[amazon_enhanced asin=”B004NHRGQW” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /] [amazon_enhanced asin=”B000W298AO” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /] [amazon_enhanced asin=”B0009VXBAQ” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /] [amazon_enhanced asin=”B001HE2SRQ” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /] [amazon_enhanced asin=”B000WAXH5I” price=”All” background_color=”FFFFFF” link_color=”000000″ text_color=”0000FF” /]

Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson has contributed to Blogcritics, and maintained a series of stand-alone sites including Known Johnson, Everything is a Mess and others. He studied both creative writing and then studio art at Arizona State. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Tom Johnson
Share this:
Close