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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Calvin Harris Releases 18 Months, Proves There's a Time and Place For Everything

Calvin Harris' new album, "18 months," is likely the most exhausting listening experience I've undergone in 2012. I say this because of the music's free association with drinking, dancing, leg cramps and heat stroke, conducive to the environment in which you might find yourself listening to Calvin Harris, which would be in, or en route to, a nightclub.

Harris' affiliation with the nightlife is so strong that halfway through reviewing the album, I found myself chugging water because it felt like I'd taken ecstasy. And then I realized the problem: I hadn't taken ecstasy. Which sounds worse than it is — I'll explain.

First, do not take ecstasy. Second, do not think because I'm being hyperbolic I am trashing Harris' album. On the contrary. Harris' album does exactly what it sets out to do: get you antsy in that “I want to wake up tomorrow morning and say 'Where am I?'” kind of way. "18 months" is music you listen to in your car on the way out, in your apartment with your friend getting ready to go out, or heading in after being out while your friend drives you home as you try to read the smudged phone number on your hand and slur belligerently, "Oh, crap! No, someone help me — is that a three or an eight?"

Or, if you don't want to go out, you could simulate a club in your apartment with Harris' cacophony of recording artist Super Friends, who will continue to be eclectic enough that you may play the album three times before your guests notice, "Hey! This record sounds familiar!" But before this moment, they will praise your DJ mastery of the evening!

If nothing else, the album is worth checking out for his collaboration with Ellie Goulding, Florence Welch and Tinie Tempah alone. What's refreshing about "18 months" is its ability to sustain interest in our ADD-riddled society by allotting artists a unique sound, a mini album unto itself. Though I wasn't a fan of Harris' bizarre and misplaced "electro fillers" throughout the album (three total, each under two minutes), I thought of them as brief musical intermissions during which I could refill my water bottle, stretch out my leg cramp and plug that number into my phone before the sweat from my hand turns that nine into a seven.

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