Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti
Mature Themes - 4AD
FILTER Grade: 85%
By Kyle MacKinnel on August 21, 2012
The weirdness is now available in Technicolor. Mature Themes is the latest installment in subversive maestro Ariel Pink’s lengthy Haunted Graffiti series and the second (along with 2010’s Before Today) to employ a winnowed soundscape. However, added clarity does not dilute Pink’s mindfuck masquerade in the slightest. Songs like the title track and second single, “Only In My Dreams,” easily pass for lucid ’70s AM pop, before torching that veil upon further inspection. As with many Pink compositions, oddly familiar pop lures give way to snares and sublime complexity over and over. “Symphony of the Nymph” is a sex-addict confessional that Tiger Woods could dance to, before capping his inevitable conquest to the Dâm-Funk aided swank of the Donnie & Joe Emerson cover, “Baby.” Simply put, Themes is Pink at his most vivid.