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The Chemical Brothers, 'The Darkness That You Fear'

As soon as "The Darkness That You Fear" starts, a handful of chords and swirling harmonies come into focus. A crunchy vocal loop enters, dreamy and blissful: "Let your heart see the colors all around you." From there, the new single by electronica icons the Chemical Brothers ramps up. Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons mix driving beats and sunny psychedelia, creating what feels like a hyperactive take on The Beatles' "Penny Lane." If that sounds lightweight by the duo's standards, the track teems with the same skittering percussion and blasts of noise that defined their biggest hits a quarter century ago. Despite the ominous title, "The Darkness That You Fear" is an uplifting soundtrack for the world, as it wakes up from a pandemic with summer beaming around the corner.

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Brad Turner is a digital editor at Colorado Public Radio. He hosts Centennial Sounds, a podcast about contemporary classical music featuring exclusive performances and conversations with composers. Brad oversees digital content for CPR Classical and CPR's OpenAir, and contributes music and arts coverage to CPR News.