The album’s sleeve, stylish and sinister, shows a woman’s hand reaching for a chandelier like someone desperately clutching for a phone to dial 911. It’s a neat accompaniment to the music itself, which is aesthetically informed by the hardboiled cop movies Lobo cites as inspiration. And while the overall feeling is bleak and austere, warmer moments shine through like glints of sunshine poking through clouds. Never is this more apparent than on "Children Of A Lesser God," the album’s most elegiac moment.
"Plant Lillies At My Head" opens the record with Lobo’s voice draped over bare-bones instrumentation. On "Court Of Devotion" the vocals become more discernible, but they’re still tangled in the dubby drums and droning guitar line. "Hardest Day" has a strange sense of foreboding, one that dissipates as it eases into "Children Of A Lesser God," before Lobo's vocals blur against a backdrop of echoing drums on "The Seasons Won’t Change (And Neither Will You)."
"More Alone" provides the album’s perkiest moment, as stormy guitars come to the fore. "Wake The Night" and "Rites Of The Wild" have a more ritualistic feel, the former evoking images of a sinister tribal gathering, the latter a rickety instrumental workout. On Restless Idylls, Lobo has cemented Tropic Of Cancer as her own, crafting a signature sound that is sleek and addictive. Where she takes it from here will be fascinating to see.