Album Review – Gotye, “Making Mirrors”


Megan Purazrang
WCB Music Writer 

Making Mirrors
Released August 19 2011
Producer – Wally de Backer
Label – Eleven
In 2011, Gotye released their third album Making Mirrors and now in early 2012 it has produced one of the biggest singles currently on the charts. The two albums that were previously released by Belgium born and Melbourne raised Wally de Backer, the man behind this electro-pop indie rock dance music sound, are “Boardface” in 2003 and two years later “Like Drawing Blood.”
One thing is certain from a straight run-through listen of the album – numerous amounts of instrumentation are used to create an aurora of dance music. This is a game changer from the feel of a drift from song to song sounding album.
The third song on the album and currently the most famous is “Somebody That I Used to Know” featuring New Zealand pop and soul singer Kimbra. The lyrical context suggests the bitter aftermath of a break up between two people. The sound is distinctive setting it apart on the record with the acoustic guitar instead of loud percussion and a longer introduction to the main body of the music within. It is also one of the few longer songs on the album. The duet demonstrated by the two vocalists is well fitting in pitch and melody. What is not comprehensible is the public obsession. The song focuses on the electro sound and lacks emotion behind the words, which is the key point of a melancholy tune.
“Eyes Wide Open” brings a welcoming danceable metric drum beat from the beginning and has a way of keeping the sad lyrics at an entertainment level with the repetitive use of the title. Moving on to the proceeding song is “Smoke and Mirrors,” new instruments are also found right away with the use of dynamically vibrant brass and bell elements. The lyrics are the fitting puzzle piece to the music and possibly the attribute highlight to the album. An eccentric song to the record is “In Your Light” a song that brings to mind a church setting of call and response choruses and power vocals. Ceaseless vocal syllable emphasis and guitar strumming with light drum accompaniment assists in the set up of a jazzy light spirit. Another odd addition is the song “State of the Act” with a soul foundation of electronic music.

Gotye has begun a musical up rise that is taking a place in mainstream music around the world. The album contains songs that are made to entertain through strong beats, instrumentation and conceivable dance material. The lack of continuance is its weakness and defines the phrase “one hit wonder” in connection to the record’s hits.