Machine Dreams

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Machine Dreams
Little Dragon - Machine Dreams.png
Studio album by
Released17 August 2009 (2009-08-17)
Recorded2007–2009 in Gothenburg, Sweden
Genre
Length43:52
LabelPeacefrog
ProducerLittle Dragon
Little Dragon chronology
Little Dragon
(2007)
Machine Dreams
(2009)
Ritual Union
(2011)
Singles from Machine Dreams
  1. "Fortune"/"Blinking Pigs"
    Released: 26 January 2009[4]
  2. "Feather"/"Stranger"
    Released: 9 July 2009[5]
  3. "My Step"/"Looking Glass"
    Released: 10 August 2009[6]
  4. "Runabout"
    Released: 7 June 2010[7]

Machine Dreams is the second studio album by Swedish electronic music band Little Dragon. It was released on 17 August 2009 by Peacefrog Records.

Composition[edit]

In making Machine Dreams, Little Dragon focused more on making uptempo dance tracks suited for live performances than on ballads like they did on their self-titled debut album.[8][9] Vocalist Yukimi Nagano described the sound and style of Machine Dreams as more "anonymous", electronic and pop-infused than the "naked" sound of their debut.[9][10] The album's title refers to its instrumentation and sound palette, which is a combination of organic and analog sounds with digitally-produced sonic textures, "machines that sound human with humans playing machine-like parts" in the words of journalist Tim Chester.[11] AllMusic reviewer Andy Kellman described the LP's instrumentation as consisting of "rubbery rhythms and liquid synthesizer patterns",[12] while Patric Fallon of XLR8R compared it to the works of Prince, The Knife and Tom Tom Club.[13]

Cover art[edit]

Japanese artist Hideyuki Katsumata, whom the group met via Myspace, was responsible for making the cover art of Machine Dreams.[9] Nagano explained, "We had a mutual respect for each other's work and we found that his expression really added something to our sound. We love him!"[9]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic74/100[14]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4/5 stars[12]
The Boston Phoenix2.5/4 stars[15]
Drowned in Sound6/10[16]
The Irish Times3/5 stars[17]
Mojo4/5 stars[18]
Pitchfork7.7/10[19]
PopMatters7/10[20]
Spin7/10[21]
URB4.5/5 stars[22]
XLR8R7/10[13]

Machine Dreams received generally positive reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalised rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 74, based on 10 reviews.[14]

Tim Chester of Wondering Sound viewed it as a "more refined version" of Little Dragon's debut album.[11] Andy Kellman of AllMusic praised the album as an "[electric] quiet storm, deceptively intense and even sensual."[12]

In a less enthusiastic review, Loud and Quiet critic Tom Goodwyn described Machines Dream as "slick, efficient pop music", writing that "each song flows beautifully into the next, driven by an equally infectious keyboard groove and comes in a perfect pop song length."[23] However, he also criticized the record for not taking any chances, labeling the lyrical content as "throwaway" and overall calling the album "cold, vacuum packed and devoid of heart and soul."[23]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Little Dragon.

No.TitleLength
1."A New"4:02
2."Looking Glass"4:55
3."My Step"3:27
4."Feather"4:53
5."Thunder Love"3:54
6."Never Never"3:37
7."Runabout"4:22
8."Swimming"3:38
9."Blinking Pigs"3:39
10."Come Home"4:13
11."Fortune"3:12

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Machine Dreams.[28]

  • Little Dragon – production, mixing
  • Guy Davie – mastering
  • Dimman – backing vocals (track 4)
  • Hideyuki Katsumata – illustration
  • Harry Lindgård – mixing
  • Petter Lindgård – mixing
  • SEEK – photography
  • La Skrockatimbales (track 7)

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.
United Kingdom 17 August 2009 Peacefrog [24][29]
31 August 2009 CD [30]
Sweden 9 September 2009
  • CD
  • digital download
[25][31]
Germany 16 October 2009
  • CD
  • LP
  • digital download
[26][32][33]
Japan 28 October 2009
  • CD
  • digital download
Village Again [34][35]
United States 3 November 2009
  • CD
  • LP
  • digital download
Peacefrog [27][36][37]
Australia 26 November 2010
  • CD
  • digital download
EMI [38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hermes, Will (26 July 2011). "Ritual Union". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  2. ^ Chun, Kimberly (3 February 2011). "Little Dragon: Swedish band feels the love in U.S." SFGate. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  3. ^ Kellman, Andy. "Ritual Union – Little Dragon". AllMusic. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  4. ^ "Fortune/Blinking Pigs: Little Dragon". Amazon (UK). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Feather (Radio Edit) by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (Sweden). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  6. ^ "My Step by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (Sweden). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  7. ^ "Runabout by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (Sweden). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  8. ^ Gao, Boyuan. "Little Dragon". Beyond Race Magazine. Archived from the original on 22 February 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  9. ^ a b c d Yeoh, Kevin (14 December 2009). "Interview: Little Dragon". Juice. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  10. ^ Freeman, John (14 December 2010). "Fruit Coming To Flower: Little Dragon Interviewed". The Quietus. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  11. ^ a b Chester, Tim (19 August 2009). "Little Dragon, Machine Dreams". Wondering Sound. Archived from the original on 2 June 2015. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  12. ^ a b c Kellman, Andy. "Machine Dreams – Little Dragon". AllMusic. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  13. ^ a b Fallon, Patric (14 January 2010). "Little Dragon Machine Dreams". XLR8R. Archived from the original on 10 September 2015. Retrieved 14 April 2017.
  14. ^ a b "Machine Dreams by Little Dragon Reviews and Tracks". Metacritic. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  15. ^ Brockman, Daniel (25 August 2009). "Little Dragon | Machine Dreams". The Boston Phoenix. Archived from the original on 6 September 2009. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  16. ^ Grant, William (1 September 2009). "Little Dragon – Machine Dreams". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  17. ^ Carroll, Jim (28 August 2009). "Little Dragon: Machine Dreams (Peacefrog)". The Irish Times. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  18. ^ "Little Dragon: Machine Dreams". Mojo (191): 92. September 2009.
  19. ^ Perpetua, Matthew (16 November 2009). "Little Dragon: Machine Dreams". Pitchfork. Retrieved 24 November 2009.
  20. ^ Hung, Estella (31 August 2009). "Little Dragon: Machine Dreams". PopMatters. Archived from the original on 6 September 2012. Retrieved 4 September 2009.
  21. ^ Reeves, Mosi (23 December 2009). "Little Dragon, 'Machine Dreams' (Peacefrog)". Spin. Archived from the original on 25 December 2009. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  22. ^ Mahoney, Douglas (29 November 2009). "Little Dragon – Machine Dreams (Review)". URB. Archived from the original on 2 December 2009. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  23. ^ a b Goodwyn, Tom (August 2009). "Albums". Loud and Quiet. Vol. 3 no. 8. p. 36. ISSN 2049-9892. Retrieved 14 April 2017 – via issuu.
  24. ^ a b "Machine Dreams (Bonus Track Version) by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (UK). Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  25. ^ a b "Machine Dreams (Bonus Track Version) by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (Sweden). Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  26. ^ a b "Machine Dreams (Bonus Track Version) von Little Dragon". iTunes Store (Germany) (in German). Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  27. ^ a b "Machine Dreams by Little Dragon". iTunes Store (US). Archived from the original on 22 August 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  28. ^ Machine Dreams (liner notes). Little Dragon. Peacefrog Records. 2009. PFG134CD.
  29. ^ "Peacefrog : Releases : Machine Dreams". Peacefrog Records. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  30. ^ "Little Dragon: Machine Dreams". HMV. Archived from the original on 11 July 2012. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  31. ^ "Machine Dreams – Little Dragon". CDON.com (Sweden) (in Swedish). Archived from the original on 7 October 2012. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  32. ^ "Machine Dreams: Little Dragon". Amazon (Germany) (in German). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  33. ^ "Machine Dreams [Vinyl LP]: Little Dragon". Amazon (Germany) (in German). Archived from the original on 18 August 2010. Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  34. ^ "Little Dragon". Village Again Records (in Japanese). Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  35. ^ "Little Dragon「Machine Dreams」". iTunes Store (Japan) (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 17 June 2014. Retrieved 20 November 2011.
  36. ^ "Machine Dreams: Little Dragon". Amazon (US). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  37. ^ "Machine Dreams (Vinyl): Little Dragon". Amazon (US). Retrieved 11 August 2018.
  38. ^ "Little Dragon Store – Machine Dreams". Getmusic (Australia). Archived from the original on 17 December 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2011.