If you're looking for them, the clues are there in plain sight. Right there, in the glimmer and thump of opening track 'Huarache Lights', a looped mantra nails Hot Chip's collective psyche six albums in. It's simple but pensive:
"Replace us with the things that do the job better."
It's both a bold call to arms and a statement of nagging doubt. If they've been too long in the game, if they need replacing, somebody else better get on with it – and it better be good.
Alexis Taylor explains: "I was trying to capture the feeling of excitement I get when hearing Joe's new music for the first time, and collaborating with him on it. Huarache Lights are some trainers I love – but in the song they're a shorthand for something modern, something very London, and for the kind of escapism and fun of a Friday night at Plastic People – which is where we were heading to DJ when we were making that track. The record is about the excitement of choosing what you might wear, choosing which records you will play. But at the same time, it's asking whether we as a band are getting old, whether people still care. The answer is meant to lie in the music."
The questions 'Huarache Lights' posts should probably be asked by any band serious about facing the future. What do we mean fifteen years in? Is there a newer model waiting at the side of stage, readying to make us obsolete? And if there is, why do what's expected of us anyway?
Such ideas sit at the heart of Why Make Sense?
It's a Hot Chip album that restates the band's intentions and redefines the very things that made them relevant in the first place. Its ten tracks shun modernist dancefloor tropes in order to flick through the dusty corners of the band's teenage record collections, back when they were experimenting with music on primitive computer programmes. But the creative process behind this record could not have been more different to the one behind those early records like San Frandisco and Coming On Strong. Why Make Sen