Jane Weaver Love In Constant Spectacle Review: Widnes kosmonaut keeps making her own scene

Jane Weaver continues to map out distinct musical universe on twelfth album

Jane Weaver

by Victoria Segal |
Updated on

Jane Weaver

Love In Constant Spectacle



IN 2019, Jane Weaver united with collaborators Peter Philipson and Raz Ullah under the name Fenella, creating a new score for cult Hungarian animation Fehérlófia (‘Son Of The White Mare’), Marcell Jankovics’ 1981 reimagining of ancient dragon-infested legend. While 2021’s Flock was a concerted pop effort, Weaver’s new record, Love In Constant Spectacle, returns to the intriguing dislocations of working in an unfamiliar language, inspired by the glancing near-misses of film subtitles. These songs aren’t so much about what’s lost in translation, though, as what might be found there: fresh meanings, different angles, new light.

It’s an approach that fits with her solo career, now deep into its second decade. From Weaver’s early acid-folk recordings to the star-seeking voyages of 2014’s The Silver Globe and 2017’s Modern Kosmology, there’s a desire to take things apart, see beyond the four-square nuts and bolts, the correct grammar. In a 2022 interview, Weaver described herself as a “massive studio geek” – “when somebody presents me with a really weird old synth or loads of strange outboard gear, I instantly want to know how it works and what I can do with it.” This might be the first time that Weaver has entrusted production of her records to somebody else (a risk vastly diminished when somebody else is John Parish) but it remains very much on brand – there’s a track here called Emotional Components. Music, language, feelings: in Weaver’s world, they can all be broken down and instructively – if curiously – rebuilt.

As a result, Love In Constant Spectacle can initially be opaque, difficult to read. The title track’s tigerish electropop comes closest to Flock’s more explicit pop moments – those touches of slo-mo Kylie or Goldfrapp disco – but elsewhere, these songs bleed a little around the edges, their LCD display slightly blotched and leaky. Interesting shapes result: there’s a spreading patch of Can-like darkness across The Axis And The Seed; Stereolab and Broadcast fuzz the pixels of Perfect Storm and Happiness In Proximity, while Motif takes an unexpected Elliott Smith form (“Don’t try to be the light/See the light”).

“There’s nothing to shout about or declare,” sings Weaver on the Juxtapozed With U flow of Emotional Components, and it’s true that these songs unfold under tight control, the Another Green World shuffle of Univers or Family Of The Sun’s medieval groove only gradually loosening the ropes, pulling down the cosmic levers, gathering towards a revelation. Despite the title, Love In Constant Spectacle is watchful rather than showy, its songs not boxing up one simple mood at a time but sitting with their uncertainty. Nuance might be going out of fashion in the world outside, but in here, Weaver speaks it fluently.

Love In Constant Spectacle is out now on Fire Records.

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