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Album Review | Indie Rock

Bibio, ‘Silver Wilkinson’

We’re past the point where pop steeped in intentional fuzz or frayed to fashionable tatters feels transportive. After all, there’s nothing more now than the freshly forgotten past, and that other N-word (nostalgia) has become a tricky filter used to impart art where it might otherwise be lacking. (Call it the Instagram effect.) Let this preface not implicate Bibio (a.k.a. Stephen Wilkinson) as artless — if anything, the British singer-songwriter-producer has shown over seven albums that toying with texture is as instrumental to his craft as lonely noodling on his guitar. “Silver Wilkinson” continues the dovetailing of sun-faded folk and jaggy clip-hop that made “Ambivalence Avenue” and “Mind Bokeh” so uniquely gripping — indeed, the spindly “À tout à l’heure” could be an outtake from either. But the gentle kisses on “Silver” are preferable to its contemporary teeth; the thumpy, funky aphasia of “You” harks back to days when Bibio could have been mistaken for a Prefuse 73 knockoff — it just sounds dated. Meanwhile, divinely diffuse songs like “You Won’t Remember” feel timeless, which is always in style. (Out Tuesday)

ESSENTIAL “You Won’t Remember”

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