In Review: Metronomy - The English Weather 10th Anniversary Edition



There’s no denying that Metronomy’s ‘The English Riviera’ was a groundbreaking release for the electronic indie-pop ensemble. With a career now spanning just over two decades, and an impressive 6-album discography, ‘The English Riviera’ propelled the band to new heights with a Mercury Prize nomination and extensive media praise. 10 years on from its release, the group have conjured up 6 additional tracks in celebration, alongside the release of a lively remix of ‘The Look’ by electro-pop legends MGMT.


‘The English Riviera 10th Anniversary Edition’ elevates the already iconic record with a furthering of their diverse sound. Having grown up in the picturesque market town of Totnes in Devon, frontman Joseph Mount found himself in the midst of fruitful inspiration along the nearby coastline. Crafting a love letter to his origins and characterising it with addictive dancey hooks, jaunty basslines and self-assured vocal delivery; the parent album to this celebratory revisitation needs no improvement. Regardless, Metronomy are back in their full groovy glory, delivering that same laid-back excellence we’ve loved for 10 glorious summers.


The first of the new tracks is ‘Aquarius’: a brief instrumental deluge of funky keys, chirps of synth and their classic overall breezy ambience. As ‘Picking Up For You’ swoops in, we’re reminded of its surfacing as an instrumental all those years ago. While the original didn’t quite make the cut for the album the first time around, it’s here to stay on the anniversary edition, with the addition of wistful lyrics atop the effortless, stylish track.


Through ‘French Organ’ and ‘Friends’, fast tempo, kooky melodies are undercut by uncomplicated, slick bass riffs that sculpt the low end. The latter track is contoured by theatrical drama, where the droning dark tones are lavish and well-rounded; conjuring an image akin to a looming storm above the sunny beach vista alluded to in the previous song. ‘The Ballad of the 17 Year Old’ begins with a western-like vibe, as a tempo increase launches into layers of spliced guitar cut with Balalaika-style twang. The looped melody is ruthlessly catchy and a real stand out of the album’s new additions. ‘Jazz Odyssey’ is a piano-driven instrumental ballad: fuelled by a repeating phrase of melodramatic keys and crashing cymbals. A perfect end to the abiding good vibes provided throughout the record.


Metronomy had nothing to prove with regard to the album’s longevity, but hearing it again — embellished and sleek — is a happy reminder that ‘The English Riviera’ is a timeless sunny day classic. The new tracks greet the old with kindred elegance and are sure to cement their place in the summer playlists of many.


‘The English Riviera 10th Anniversary Edition’ will be available on the 30th of April via Because Music.