Proving that dance could thrive in the mainstream, Disclosure’s intuitive way with a song made them unlikely stars of 2012, two young brothers with a red button marked ‘banger’ glowing bright on their crossfader. Hits were the language in which they dealt, and their debut ‘Settle’ had plenty, each song going on to gain a life much larger than itself. Their ascent had been swift, and at the top of that mountain came ‘Caracal’, a moment to display their new-found maturity. The follow-up had its own fair share of star-studded moments (Lorde, Sam Smith, The Weeknd), but there was something about it that felt overly considered, a party winding down into drinks and nibbles as opposed to an out-and-out rave.
Both still in their 20s, you can’t blame Disclosure for wanting to grow up, but ‘Energy’ thankfully does so in a way that pulls bodies firmly back to the dance floor. Utilising a considered selection of guest vocalists, it takes a keener focus on rap and afrobeats, making good on the breadcrumb trail of singles that have tided fans over in the five-year album interim. Common takes ‘Reverie’ straight back to ‘90s Chicago, while Cameroonian musician Blik Blassy shines on ‘Ce N’est Pas’, a silken-shoulder groove that manages to nail the free-flowing, meditative sound they couldn’t quite nail with ‘Caracal’. At the other end of the spectrum, the equally potty-mouthed Aminé and slowthai deliver the goods on ‘My High’, a grubby number that demands to be bumped loud out of car windows. If this music thing doesn’t work out, Disclosure could make a pretty penny establishing duos - Kehlani and Syd gel instantly on ‘Birthday’, a song rich in sonics and instagram-captioning imagery.
Perhaps Disclosure’s return to form comes from the strength of their most audibly recognisable collaborator. Introduced to us on ‘When A Fire Starts To Burn’, legendary hip hop preacher Eric Thomas is back for the album’s title track, a rousing, vuvuzela-toting stomp that will have you beating down the door of whatever local gym reopens first from lockdown, demanding to get on that treadmill and sweat with the fury of a thousand suns. It’s what they do best, and it’s what we want more of - motivational, sky-reaching anthems that don’t overthink the euphoria at hand. It might be time to reinstate that red button…
Sky FX, Wesley Joseph and Lola Young have also joined the bill for the event.
It’s time for the biggest and best new music of the week.
The track follows January’s Zedd collaboration, ‘You’ve Got To Let Go If You Want To Be Free’.
Kicking off in April!