Free Reign - DOMINO
FILTER Grade: 83%
By Tamara Vallejos on November 13, 2012
On Clinic’s 2010 record, Bubblegum, Liverpool’s surgical-mask-wearing foursome took its frenetic post-punk into new, relatively subdued territory. That laidback aesthetic is again present on Clinic’s latest, Free Reign, but it’s morphed into something significantly trippier, and infinitely more seductive. Each of the record’s nine tracks casts a uniquely hypnotic spell that transports us into varying landscapes; “Cosmic Radiation,” with its groovy, pulsating jazz foundation, sends us onto a sprawling, free-floating journey to the edges of space and back, while “King Kong” takes us into dark, smoky rooms, where each flash of a strobe light uncovers a deliciously illicit deed. Common throughout is a scorching sensuality that is destined to make Free Reign the soundtrack to a lot of smoldering affairs. “The touch of your skin/Keeps me alive,” sings frontman Ade Blackburn on “Sun and the Moon.” It may be the album’s closing track, but things might just be getting started.