Feature

Washed Out: Within and Without

Ernest Greene, credited with founding the genre of music known as chillwave, has just come out with his first full-length release.

(Sub Pop)

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Washed Out’s first full-length release is “as suited to bedrooms and headphones as to swanky nightclubs,” said Liz Pelly in The Boston Phoenix. Following two hit EPs from 2009, the synth-pop sensation Ernest Greene, who records as the one-man band Washed Out, “amps it up exponentially” here with live instruments and “more meticulously crafted songs.” Washed Out is credited with starting and popularizing the genre of music known as chillwave—a hybrid of synthesizer music and indie pop. But his success is in some ways his downfall, said Carrie Battan in The Boston Globe. Because the music world has “been inundated with so many sound-alikes since Greene started out, and because the genre’s lethargic haze is inherently lacking in punch,” this album arrives already feeling flat. “Easy to listen to, but impossible to feel excited about,” Within and Without is “compelling evidence that chillwave’s allure” has already faded.

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