Monday, 26 June 2017

Janelle Monáe - The ArchAndroid (2010)

Forgot how much I loved this album until one of its singles (Tightrope) turned up on a TV advert recently.  Back in 2010, this was Janelle Monáe's first full-length album, and was one of those rare double-albums where not only do none of its 18 tracks feel like filler, but it just appears to get better and better as it goes on, with the most stunningly ambitious material in its second half, culminating in a deft reconfiguration of Debussy's Clair De Lune in the penultimate song.

Before getting to that, prepare to luxuriate for an hour in an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink stew of pop, soul, folk, punk rock and a full blotter-sheet's worth of psychedelia, as the rough overall concept unfolds of the titular android being sent to liberate humanity in the funkiest possible way.  If I had to pick favourites, they'd be the woozy Mushrooms & Roses with its blistering guitar solo, or the hushed choral folk of 57821, but the whole thing is just a stone cold masterpiece.  Definitely time for me to pull out the follow-up album (The Electric Lady from 2013) and enjoy it afresh, and keep my fingers crossed for the new material she's been promising for this year.



  1. Crikey this is good. Someone I'd heard of but never actually heard. Thanks for the intro.

  2. Whoah dude, good luck keeping this up.

  3. Thanks, looking forward to checking this out.

  4. Thanks for this. I would never have discovered it on my own. The final track is brilliant.