Back in 2014, Röyksopp claimed their fifth album ‘The Inevitable End’ to be their last - at least in a conventional sense. And while ‘Profound Mysteries’ does come with a plethora of additional shenanigans - largely visuals to accompany each track (what some might in fact refer to as ‘music videos’) and a fancy website to showcase the lot - it is, one finds, very much… an album. In fact, it’s only really closing sequence ‘Press <>’ that alludes to anything else at all, the website’s ‘next’ command acting as loop back to the introductory ‘(Nothing But) Ashes’. The record mostly acts as showcase to a series of collaborations, echoing their work with Robyn on 2014’s ‘Do It Again’. Single ‘Impossible’ with Alison Goldfrapp showcases both her silky vocal and pop nous, and the duo’s ability to make sounds both euphoric and decidedly chill in tandem. Fellow Norwegian Susanne Sundfør joins in to make use of familiar disco chord progressions, bringing to mind anything from Pet Shop Boys’ ‘It’s A Sin’ to half of Steps ‘90s discography. There’s also time for a welcome musical return from Pixx, her detached vocals helming a robotic influence on ‘How The Flowers Grow’, while in direct contrast, Beki Mari (ex-Nouvelle Vague) situates ‘This Time, This Place’ in the sweaty heart of the dancefloor. Whether underselling ‘Profound Mysteries’ as a standalone record, or over-egging its peripheral bells and whistles, there’s still much to enjoy about Röyksopp’s sixth.
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