Bangers that work the prefrontal cortex as much as the pelvis: that’s the manifesto for Belgian electropop duo Charlotte Adigéry & Bolis Pupul. Truth be told, they’re stronger on the hips than the quips. Their debut album, co-written and co-produced with Soulwax, is a treasure chest of funk, French house, sweaty techno and all kinds of dirty electronic weirdness to rival Moloko at their freakiest. But their takes on the fraught subject of wokeness on Esperanto (“Don’t say: I would like a black Americano/ Say: I’ll have an African American, please”), or sexual agency on the Timbaland-flavoured dark R&B of Reappropriate err on the side of basic.
The thumping, technoid Blenda, working out the tensions of immigrant heritage, and the rubberised-metal shimmy of It Hit Me, recounting the duo’s moments of sexual awakening, make a better fist of topicality. Their mischievous energy is toughest to resist on the cheeky Ceci N’est Pas Un Cliché, a string of overused lyrical phrases given marching orders over deeply infectious funky house, or Thank You, a pulsing, sarcastic up-yours to all us purveyors of unsolicited advice: “Couldn’t have done this without you and your opinion… Yes, I prefer my first EP too!”