In Conflict - DOMINO
FILTER Grade: 81%
By Jeffrey Brown on June 18, 2014
With In Conflict, Owen Pallett continues a move toward more personal and potentially revealing material that began with dropping his Final Fantasy moniker in 2010. From the first track (“I Am Not Afraid”), there is a sense of revealing intimacy—but just as the album’s liner notes are partially obscured, there’s a sense that Pallett’s music will always need to be figured out, leaving the listener to bring their own experiences to the songs. The tension between revelation and ambiguity is echoed in the music, which avoids the easy, straightforward release of pop crescendos in favor of alternating textures and rhythms. It also incorporates more electronic elements without sacrificing the orchestral quality that has made Pallet’s music stand out, all pulled together by his vibrant singing. Following an Oscar-nominated film score for Her, Pallett’s latest album sounds like a score that stands alone, without the need of a film to support it.