Album Review: Renegade Breakdown by Marie Davidson
Very Good, Based on 3 Critics
Pitchfork - 72 Based on rating 7.2/10
Always ahead of a trend, Montreal musician and producer Marie Davidson quit touring in September 2019, six months before everyone else did. Years of vigorous, largely solo travel behind 2016's Adieux au Dancefloor and 2018's Working Class Woman left her depleted and addicted to the sleeping pills she used to cope with insomnia, she told the CBC. Plus, she was tired of club music.
In August 2019, Marie Davidson announced she would be turning her back on club music. Years of unforgiving touring schedules had taken their toll on her mental and physical health, and her disaffection with 'club culture' - already clear on 2016's 'Adieux au dancefloor' - had intensified. 'Renegade Breakdown' sees her and her new group L'Œil Nu blithely try to rediscover the fun in music and collaboration.
As Marie Davidson's music progressively became more club-focused throughout the 2010s, she spent more time on the road, lugging her gear to countless venues and festivals via constant red-eyed flights. Her sharply focused 2018 full-length Working Class Woman detailed how her exhaustive schedule was taking its toll on her physical and mental health through cathartic and motivational spoken word tracks as well as frantic, knotty electro instrumentals. It was easily her most acclaimed work yet, ranking in numerous year-end lists and scoring a huge, enduring club hit with the cheeky single "Work It," which earned a Grammy nomination thanks to its remix by Soulwax.