Sydney, Australia-based Warp alums PVT—formerly known as Pivot—return with their fifth full-length, a record born both out of necessity and an innate desire for change. And while New Spirit, on felte, is full of warm analog arpeggios, soft textures, and pleasant rhythmic counterpoints, there’s also a certain intensity, tension, and sadness to the record.
“Morning Mist, Rock Island Bend,” the nine-minute first single, is the album’s musical centerpiece. “All good things come to an end,” croons vocalist Richard Pike as the track blooms and develops. It never quite climaxes; instead, it dissolves into a sea of washed-out synthesizers.
The title track speaks directly to the political and environmental disillusionment that a lot of Australians are feeling. “New heart, old blood,” Pike recites. “New arc, same flood/New money, old debt/New risk, old regret.” It scans as a reflection on the backwardness and regressiveness of the current political climate. But it’s not all grey skies; instead, PVT encourage us to arm ourselves with a new spirit. True change requires a fundamental shift in how we think and act. Now’s the time to step forward and give it a try.
—Adam Badi Donoval