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Cool Spin: Penguin Prison, ‘Lost in New York’

In the four years since Penguin Prison’s self-titled debut, New York-sprung dance-pop has become all the more established by the likes of MGMT and Holy Ghost! With his follow-up, Lost In New York (Downtown Records), it’s clear Penguin Prison’s Chris Glover has spent the time working on his ’80s-influenced pop chops.

Lost In New York starts with jumpy synths reminiscent of Hot Chip on “Try To Lose” and keeps the mood up on the hip-shaking “Show Me The Way.” While Penguin Prison is a one-man project with Glover both songwriting and producing, Lost In New York is heavy on the collaborations. Most notable of these is the duo Oliver on the Hall and Oates-inspired “Calling Out” and Amanda Warner and Pete Wade of MNDR fame on the floor-friendly “Never Gets Old.”

No matter who Glover is working with, it is his chart-ready, confident vocals that push these frothy compositions. He sounds melancholy on the bubbly rhythms of “Don’t Tell Me How It Ends” and only slightly less sad on the pulsing “Laughing At The Floor.”

Lost In New York is of the moment, but could have just as easily have been released 30 years ago at the height of fun, ’80s synth-pop. Now or then, it maintains that carefree sentiment

Written by Christopher Glover and David Gross except: “Stop Moving” and “Laughing At The Floor” written by Christopher Glover; “Show Me The Way” and “Sit Down” written by Christopher Glover and Andre Allen Anjos; “Never Gets Old” written by Christopher Glover, Peter Wade, Amanda Warner, and David Gross; “Calling Out” written by Christopher Glover, Oliver Goldstein, and Vaughn Oliver. Produced by Christopher Glover, additional production by David Gross, Andre Allen Anjos, Peter Wade, Oliver Goldstein, Vaughn Oliver, Chris Zane at Penguin Prison Studios, Battlestation Studios, Comet LA, Pulse Recordings, and Gigantic Studios. All songs mixed by Andrew Maury except: “Caught In A Daze” and “Stop Moving” mixed by Chris Zane. Mastered by Joe La Porta at Sterling Sound.