Santigold's Second Album Heavy on Collaboration

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Master of My Make Believe, the sophomore album from Santi White, better known as Santigold, came out in May, but we’re reviewing it now because it continues to be such an amazing album.

Even after debuting in the No. 1 position in the week the album dropped, tracks from the album continue to be awesome. Heavy on the collaboration, this album has influences from master DJs Switch and Diplo (of Major Lazer fame), Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs), and members of various other musical projects.

The album starts out with Santigold getting back to her punk roots for a bit with “GO!,” a collaboration with Karen O. The next track, “Disparate Youth,” is perhaps the most memorable song on the album, and was the product of intense collaboration between Karen O, Diplo and others.

The bass line is especially characteristic of Diplo’s touch, but the sheer catchiness of the song, although it doesn’t avoid the usual pitfalls of contemporary pop music, has a lot  to do with the way the song was collaboratively developed.

Without skirting the tired themes of the Top 40, Santigold was able to produce a song that can be enjoyed by a panoply of musical tastes. The tracks between “Disparate Youth” and the last track on the album, “Big Mouth,” are enjoyable and well done in their own right, but the last track deserves mad credit on its own.

Inspired by the song “Up All Night” from Portuguese Afro-electronica group Buraka Som Sistema, the co-producers of the song “Big Mouth” significantly diverge from the straightforward but catchy “Up All Night.”

For one, instead of extolling the virtues of all-night parties, Big Mouth laments the pseudo-intellectualism of modern art and culture. Additionally, and most importantly, it doesn’t sound like an electronic dance song at all. Instead, Santigold’s “Big Mouth” chooses to alternate between medium-paced spoken word and a frenetic kuduro-inspired riff.

Master of My Make Believe is a fantastic album that you’ll have on loop on your music listening device for a while. Even after you get tired of listening to it a thousand times in a row, you’ll be keeping at least a few of the tracks on your standard playlist.

Track List

  1. GO! (featuring Karen O)
  2. Disparate Youth
  3. God from the Machine
  4. Fame
  5. Freak Like Me
  6. This Isn’t Our Parade
  7. The Riot’s Gone
  8. Pirate in the Water
  9. The Keepers
  10. Look at These Hoes
  11. Big Mouth