The Books – “Take Time”
appears on The Lemon of Pink
The Books’ second album of cut-and-paste electronic folk music, The Lemon of Pink, never fails to bring a smile to my face. There’s a sense of optimism and humanity about it that works so well, particularly on its finest songs – “Tokyo”, “There is No There” and the gorgeous “Take Time”. Through its numerous samples of chattering voices and boisterous, excited laughter, the song oozes high-spirited personality and positivity, an effect amplified in the way these bursts of liveliness juxtapose against the song’s plodding, titular recitation. Snippets of unusual dialogue are spliced together with the band’s usual precision, infusing “Take Time” with levity and removing any trace of self-seriousness. Everyone’s favourite part seems to be the little girl who “climbed into a tree one day…”, and it’s probably the funniest joke-line on the album when taken in isolation. In the context of the song, alongside the opaque, cerebral cuts like “There is no remembrance of former things” and “Something is happening which is not happening at all”, it all combines into this overarching sense of existential wonder and celebration that’s just feels so well-meaning. This kind of bitsy sound collage could so easily have been a vague mess – Zammuto and De Jong deserve props for nailing the vibe so perfectly.