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How, as an artist, do you follow the act that rescued you from the jaws of extinction? After the success of 2011's No Colour, Merc Long and Logan Kroeber were convinced that Dodos had made their last album. Long had lost touch of what he had left to say with the group, and whether it was worth saying. All he knew was that he wanted to make music with their new guitarist, Chris Reimer. In 2012, Reimer unexpectedly passed away, and it inspired the duo with the energy and responsibility to make Carrier.

Carrier was their statement; the piece that brought about the Dodos for another lifetime, and it was an album they had to write. How does one cope with an expulsion like writing that? How does one overcome those feelings of detachment and purposelessness flooding again? By allowing that autonomous force to drive their art. Individ is, in essence, the product of a group hell-bent on escaping the aches of Carrier without losing sight of what made it beautiful.

It's unusual when an album begins in this manner: four minutes of gazing and dawdling that is an essential pre-requisite for a unique moment to be realised. I am, of course, talking about the iconic guitar and drum figure that spirals through the storm of 'Precipitation'. Intermittently decorated by the "let go of it, get out of here, let's get out of here for good," this indoctrinating, escapist anthem is one of the most poignant movements on Individ.

If Carrier had moments of lapses in interest and tenderness, this is a relentless record. On the previous release, pieces like 'Bubble' would be comprised of slighter texture - 'Relief' - but here we're thrusted into a torrent of emotion and prodded with questions: "is this too much for you?" Try to feel your way through its taut layers, and you're shunned. Seldom are we allowed through the exterior on the collection, however, pieces like 'Darkness' leak a noxious rawness that may be met better left unexplored for the time being. Without diminishing how complicated a collection this is, the loss of Chris Reimer has clearly left an imprint on Dodos, and we hear this most significantly on 'Pattern/Shadow' with the heart-wrenching chorus "your shadow remains."

As a general rule, the pieces throughout the record possess a sovereign, free-falling nature. Whilst their development doesn't always make sense, you never lose that sense of urgency or momentum. It feels as if the acoustic and organic nature of the record's production has informed the writing and the direction of the work. The group detailed after Carrier how they had to "nail" the complexities of pieces in the studio as it was all tracked live - one of the studio Tiny Telephone's pre-requisites - and, as Individ was recorded in the same place, they've clearly been influenced by these requirements. Whether it's the arpeggiated and intertwined guitars on 'Darkness' or the 7/4 time signatures on 'Goodbyes and Endings', there are moments of thorough madness and complexity on Individ that you're more likely to hear on a Math-rock or Fusion record than an indie rock one.

After the open-ended tenderness of Carrier, this is not the type of album you'd have expected from Dodos, especially when you consider that the records were recorded back-to-back. However, for the embers of acceptance on Carrier to have ignited this whole world of fuel and fire, the lines had to be crossed. It's almost like grief in reverse; we've heard the aftermath and now we're living the tragedy. This is a fraught and definite collection of the uttermost importance. For the first time in their career, the end of the album doesn't feel like the extinction of Dodos, but instead an invigoration.

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