Personnel: Alex Foote (guitar); Ben Marshall (drums); Satnam Ramgotra (percussion).
Audio Mixer: Claudius Mittendorfer.
The third album from Savoir Adore, 2016's The Love That Remains, finds the synthy Brooklyn outfit fleshing out their ambient, new wavey soundscapes with a sophisticated maturity that straddles the line between '80s-style adult contemporary and club-ready dance pop. The first full-length album of new material since the departure of singer Deidre Muro, who left during the early stages of recording in 2014, The Love That Remains showcases the talents of co-founding leader Paul Hammer. In light of Muro's departure, Hammer began collaborating on new material with a handful of other co-vocalists including Leah Hayes, Lauren Zettler, and Winslow Bright. Surprisingly, the result sounds a lot like Savoir Adore's previous work, albeit with an added emotionality.
Many of the songs, like the bubbly "Lovers Wake" and the yearningly romantic, EDM-tinged anthem "Mountains (Love Won't Burn My Heart)" deal explicitly with themes of love, heartbreak, loss, and acceptance. Despite some of the heavier emotional subject matter at play on The Love That Remains, it never feels belabored or overtly maudlin. With a tight backing ensemble of musicians, Hammer delves headlong into a set of songs that wouldn't sound out of place on an '80s Peter Gabriel album. In that sense, The Love That Remains also brings to mind the work of such similarly inclined acts as fellow Brooklynites St. Lucia, Canada's Young Galaxy, and Belgium's Gotye. Cuts like "Giants" and "Savages" find Hammer dueting over shimmering synths, huge drum beats, and neon-toned guitar lines. Elsewhere, the '80s influence is brought even more to the fore on cuts like the Giorgio Moroder-esque "Devotion" and the Duran Duran-influenced "Paradise Gold." On The Love That Remains, Hammer has taken his heartache and turned it into something kinetic, sultry, and euphoric. As he sings on "Crowded Streets, "We'll run into the crowded streets/Hands will meet and then we'll see/Into the echoes of the one belief/That our love will never die." Ultimately, it's that sense of something more at stake that helps The Love That Remains resonate long after it's over. ~ Matt Collar