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02 May 13
04 Jun 13
19 Nov 12
Review: Braiden appearing on Rush Hour is possibly one of the least expected combinations to surface in recent times; more specifically Braiden appearing on any label is surprising, given how quiet the Londoner has been on the production front since gracing Joy Orbison's now defunct Doldrums imprint. A sideline in photography, a smattering of remixes and a prospering reputation as both a club and radio DJ (check his NTS show) means Braiden's been kept a busy boy, though this two track induction on Rush Hour demonstrates there's been loss in production verve. Lead track "Belfry Tower" seems built for submission pounding intent, rhythms gleefully bouncing off each other as a pressurised bassline puts the squeeze on the crunchy textures that attempt to implement some semblance of melody. "Paganini" introduces a whole different slant on Braiden's palette, commencing with a famous singer's ode to the Italian composer who lends his surname to the title which subtly drops into a killer house groove, all expertly layered drum patterns and wonderfully warm and bouncy bass lines complemented by some brilliant echoed usage of the vocal throughout.
28 May 12
Played by: Ennio Styles (Stylin Radio Show)
Review: Dutch house powerhouse Kraak & Smaak drop a favourite from their recent album "Electric Hustle", which features the rugged-yet-soothing vocals of house legend Romanthony. While their original is a quiet storm of minimal drums and classic house stabs, Roach Motel drop two fleshed-out revisits that lend the tune a building, club-happy vibe. Psychemagik flip the tune too, creating an Italo-leaning beauty with Romanthony's detuned vocals giving it an epic quality.
15 Mar 10
Played by: Alex M.o.r.p.h
10 Dec 12
Played by: Bilanez Music
Review: Chicago's Jesse Boykins is back with a new slice of future-soul on Ninja Tune. "I'm New Here" is a dreamy exercise in vocal production with layer upon layer of velvety vocals woven together with the smoothest synths in the western hemisphere. Did we say this record was smooth? On remix duties Jacques Greene turns "The Perfect Blues" into crystalline synth soul with digital harp melodies being plucked in heaven. Machinedrum live up to their name by piling on the drum rolls and claps. "Better For You" is yet more R&B dripping in arpeggiated synths, providing further reason for grabbing this EP quick smart!
22 Oct 12
Played by: Chris Coco
Review: Considering its sizeable role in bringing James Blake and Mount Kimbie to the world, it makes sense for Hotflush to be looking for the next generation of post-everything electronica. Step forward then Shelter Point, a pair of young producers with all the sonic tools to fill the gap. Opening track "Braille" is characterised by the same billowing organ sounds as Blake's work with softly spoken vocals that belie a contemporary indie sensibility, while the clip-clop percussion and downtempo piano of "Forever For Now" recalls Mount Kimbie's "Before I Move Off". "Hold On Me" sees a funky neon synth melody contrasted with some trap beats and evil bassline. The most striking track however is "Sleep Easy", a vocal ballad whose 80s easy-listening style is like a loose limbed, contemporary take on early Junior Boys.
23 Apr 12
Review: Paul Rose's Hotflush imprint continues to expand operations in pleasantly refreshing directions, turning to fledgling production talent Beaumont for their latest offering. The young Scottish producer caused a fuss in all the right places last year with the neon infused Blush Response EP on Kinnego, and the four tracks on Never Love Me retain this approach and sit neatly alongside his new labelmate Jimmy Edgar, though the music is obviously a lot less smutty in execution. Lead track "Never Love Me" sets the tone, the stop start rhythm gradually succumbing to the intoxicating waves of neonized speaker box funk. "Uptown" commences in decidedly cinematic tones before bursting into fluorescent life atop a sick beat, the only possible criticism being the short duration. Up next, "Rendez-Vous" slowly fizzes into life via increasingly expansive atmospheric tones before dropping into a naggingly excellent steppish array of clacks, soft focus stabs and undulating rhythms that poke gently at Beaumont's exaggerated vocal tones.
28 May 12
Review: After his sterling turn on Untold's Hemlock label last year, Guy Andrews follows many of his peers in graduating to the dizzy heights of Hotflush with this new EP. "The Wait" is a taut stomper, featuring more of those dense rhythms that got people taking notice in the beginning, while measured dub techno chords pace underneath. It's a moody track throughout, but immaculately produced so that every nuance of percussion shines through. "Hands In Mine" opts for a more broken beat, with some gnarly stabs of melody and a steady pad underneath the myriad elements.
02 Jul 12
Played by: Peter Edison, Lifecycle, Juno Recommends Deep House, Juno Recommends Techno, Black Jack, Manhattan, Top Billin DJ Team, Hybrid
Review: Whatever your opinion of Scuba's divisive album Personality, there's no denying that "NE1BUTU" was one of the album's brightest moments. Taking a punchy breakbeat and upbeat piano riff, the track is Paul Rose's love letter to pretty much everything great about every dance track from the 90s. Those that wish the producer would return to his darker ways however, can take comfort in the accompanying remix, in which Rose dons his SCB hat and turns it into a lean techno tool that cloaks the original's colour in shades of grey, creating one of his most incisive club tracks to date.
10 Sep 12
Review: This new Hotflush release from mysterious duo NeferTT - apparently a meeting of minds between two familiar bass music producers - comes on like a thoroughly inebriated version of Sepalcure. Throughout, the EP offers a delicious blend of intricate melodies, woozy warmth and full-bodied bottom end. Whether reviving the bagginess of break-based '89 house (see "Blue Skies Red Soil"), reinventing instrumental hip-hop ("Cleo's Spot") or celebrating rush-inducing deepness ("Pyramel"), NeferTT's compositions are never less than picturesque.
09 Apr 12
Review: Returning to Hotflush after the label helped his solo breakthrough last year, Lando Kal is here with more of that hybrid house music which he is fast making his own. There's a key sound that seems to be emerging with his productions of late, a kind of ring modulation that Kal is slapping on his synths that makes them both warm and eerie in the same note. "Rhythm Sektion" plays off this duality perfectly, making for a seductive mid-paced dancefloor jam. "Inquisition" goes deeper on the details, with some intricate percussion and a bouncy bassline filling a mildly bleak atmosphere.
16 Apr 12
Review: Presumably signing off on their excellent debut album from last year, this EP comprises two Sepalcure originals - the juke gone broken-beat of "Eternally Yrs" and the previously unreleased "Don't Cry", a tense standoff between hyperactive 808 and more flowing, soulful waves of vocal and drifting synth delay. As with any Hotflush release, the remixers are exceptionally well chosen - Marcus Intalex in his Trevino guise transforms "Hold On", pulling the original's looser elements together with a taut rhythmic focus, but the big remix is from Canadian wunderkind Kevin McPhee. His take on album standout track "The One" sets the delicate stabs into the background, turning it into a rolling drum-led behemoth which is neither house nor techno, but somewhere pleasantly in between.
27 Feb 12
Played by: Chris Coco, Lung, Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy), Bizt, Matthew Kyle, The Legendary 1979 Orchestra, Djs: Most Charted - Dubstep, Rack N Ruin, Resident Advisor, Manhattan, Jon Saigon, Mak & Pasteman, Tcts
Review: Where Scuba's earlier work was typified by the same metallic sheen and monochrome hue, it's noticeable on his third album Personality just how much more colour he's letting into the mix. Whether it's the crisp electro breaks of opener "Ignition Key" or the joyous pop chimes of "July", the mood is overall far sunnier than the Scuba of before. There's drum & bass explorations being made on "Cognitive Dissonance", chart-baiting hooks aplenty and a wealth of vocal action from speeches to divas. All in all it's another essential, multi-faceted evolutionary step for the Berlin-based producer.
07 Nov 11
Review: As a prelude to their debut album, released in December, Sepalcure (the pairing of Braille and Machinedrum) drop this single containing "Pencil Pimp", one of the album's many highlights. "Pencil Pimp" is an uptempo track in the vein of Machinedrum's album from earlier this year, incorporating the rhythmic flex of footwork and insistent piano line with washed out textures and acoustic samples which recall labelmates Mount Kimbie. Up next is "I'm Alright", a track exclusive to the single release. If the A-Side seemed like Machinedrum was taking the lead, then this track is obviously much like Braille's recent EP on Hotflush. Combining broken beats with a housier tempo, the track is as rich as its counterpart, utilising its titular vocal sample to great effect, with razor sharp handclaps swimming in an ocean of aquatic synths.
05 Dec 11
Review: 2011 has really seen young producer George FitzGerald come into his own, with exceptional releases on Hotflush, Aus, and his own ManMakeMusic imprint all helping him to develop his silky brand of garage-leaning bass music into a trademark sound. His final release of the year sees him return to the Hotflush stable for Shackled, the title track of which will already be familiar to those who have heard Scuba's DJ-Kicks mix. It revolves around a lush ever-intensifying chord sequence and twitchy acidic synth line and is perhaps his most effective dancefloor weapon yet. However, it's the following two tracks which provide the real delights; "Feel Like" is a foray into a housier terrain, with an organ melody that evokes some of Marc Kinchen's NY garage productions of the 90s, while "Friends In High Places" sees FitzGerald traverse moodier waters with a slow burning affair, bringing its loose beat in slowly over a wash of pulsating synths.
04 Apr 11
Played by: Ndv (Polar Pair/Botanika), Chris Coco, Shadow Dancer, Dan Oh, Juno Recommends Dubstep, Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy), Reilly Steel, Matthew Kyle, Doorly, Larssen
Review: For anyone with a passion for forward-thinking bass music, Back & 4th should be essential listening. Via a sprinkling of super-hot exclusives and historic label favourites, it brilliantly celebrates the enduring appeal of Scuba's vital Hotflush Recordings imprint. For confirmed fans, it's the first new jams that will titillate most. It boasts some real killers; strobe-lit future garage, dubstep and wonky neck-snappers from Boxcutter, Rosca, Boddika, Falty DL and Scuba himself (the acid house-flavoured "Feel It"). If that's still not enough to tempt you, take a look at the previously released tracks from Joy Orbison, Mount Kimbie and Untold.
31 Jan 11
Review: Another hotly tipped act to appear on Scuba's Hotflush imprint, Sepalcure blend ambient soundscapes with lush melodies, hushed vocals and a deep, experimental post-dubstep sound that's quite frankly, really rather wonderful. Kicking off with the title track, Sepalcure send us into a sublime headspace which is somewhere between contemporary hot shots like Mount Kimbie, Pariah and fellow yanks Vondelpark and Ninja stalwarts like Cinematic Orchestra. Next, "Your Love" takes things even more downbeat with echoing, reverbed atmospheric crackles and a warm, murmuring b-line yet there is a sense in which this track won't settle - constantly fidgeting and looking towards the horizon until entering a contemplative passage towards the end. It leads us neatly into "No Think" - which could well be the defining track of the EP, what "Work Them" was to Ramadanman last summer. Here, lurching 2-step rhythms hit home with great effect, the same shimmering, barely-there vocals and an overwhelming sense of brooding darkness. Divine. "Inside" closes the EP with a short two-minute Flying Lotus style finale, incorporating string flourishes, muttering lyrics and warm ambient watercolour washes.
19 Jul 10
17 Jan 11
Review: George FitzGerald first came onto our radar last year with superb "The Let Down/Weakness". Here he makes a welcomed return to the airwaves and a bright start to 2011 with his next release on Scuba's ever-exciting Hotflush imprint, backed with an edit from the man himself on the flip. Two-step meets future garage in the title track with a repeated Ramadanman style vocal punctuating the beats and rolling, undulating b-line below. Enticing and insatiably good, this certainly whets the appetite for more to come from the hotly tipped producer this year. Over on the flip Scuba dons his SCB alias for a pared down version of the original, which will leave Berghain veterans drooling. Big.
12 Oct 09
Played by: Ennio Styles (Stylin Radio Show), Mj Cole, Robert Luis (Tru Thoughts), Makoto, Toyboy & Robin, Shadow Dancer, Bam Bam Dealers, Sinden, Juno Recommends Dubstep, Annie Mac, Pete Tong, Rob Da Bank, Mr Scruff, Gilles Peterson, Resident Advisor, Annie Nightingale, Chamboche, House Of Traps (Firecracker), Caspa, R1 Ryders, Dubstep Forum Awards, Dubstep Forum Awards, Gareth Bilaney
12 Mar 12
Played by: Homegroove Project
Review: Off the back of the widely lauded Glass Swords LP, Rustie peels off a prime slice of crossover potential with a radio edit of "Surph". Featuring Nightwave on vocals, it's a blindingly bright production that cuts it with the big budget chart toppers. Fusing the stacatto synth lines of trance, boogie lead lines and the chunky drum machine work of trap rap, it's as razor-sharp a production as you're ever likely to hear. All it takes is Nightwave's honey-coated (and vocodered) R&B croon to make this a serious contender for summertime radio smash.
20 May 13
20 May 13
Review: Anyone slightly confused by the appearance of Laurel Halo on Hyperdub with last year's album Quarantine will find that Behind The Green Door makes her case for inclusion on the label much clearer. Rather than a continuation of the vocal-led, enveloping soundscapes of that album, this four track EP is futuristic club music from start to end; "Throw" sends jagged percussion and splashes of piano across fiercely competing basslines, while "Uhffo" contrasts its inky black low end with more reflective synth moments. "Noyfb" combines a UK funky style rhythm with tunnelling bass pulses and dubbed out chimes, and "Sex Mission" ends with a 4/4 techno track that loses none of the producer's unique palette. Fans of the recent manoeuvres on PAN will be all over this EP, which comes highly recommended.
23 Apr 12
Review: On his Hyperdub debut last year, youngster Walton made a real impression on the Juno review ears, and we've been eager for more ever since. Once again surfacing on Kode 9's imperious label, the All Night EP finds Walton on equally impressive form, replicating the course of his debut with the title track being the most immediate production. "All The Night" is luridly colourful in the thick 8 bit textures that spill out over hyperactive vocal edits and buccaneering drum chops. Up next, "Mallet" does more with steel pans in the opening bars than Jammy xx ever did, before veering off into an eminently satisfying bleep heavy UKF flex, whilst "Kush" drops the tempo down to a heavily saturated, downtrodden shoulder lean.
30 Apr 12
Review: On a slow and steady rise with a distinctive take on UK Funky, Ill Blu haven't given the people much to chew on with their career so far, but one can only assume the duo have been hunkering down honing their craft as this trumps their last outing on Numbers. "Clapper" is a brawny cut with a nagging mid-range squawk and tasty rolling brushes of snares on a milatiristic tip. Juke's man of the moment Traxman does a hefty chop up of the original with a stomping rave era cut that wouldn't sound out of place on The Prodigy's Experience.
27 Aug 12
Played by: Ennio Styles (Stylin Radio Show), Dusk + Blackdown, Lwp Records, Diplo, Chrissy Murderbot, Diphasic
Review: Rapidly following up 2011's superb Keysound long-player Routes, production trio LV make a logical move to Hyperdub for Sebenza, an album that features a trio of South African vocal talent, including Okmalumkoolkat from Dirty Paraffin, Spoek Mathambo and MC/producer duo, Ruffest, and production that takes in Kwaito, Soca, kuduro and UK funky to create its own unique sound. Standouts include the dark and urgent title track, the snappy vocal wit of "Animal Prints" and the spiky digital dancehall of "Nothing Like Us". But like Routes, Sebenza is much more than simply a collection of disparate dance tracks, but a rich tapestry of influences that is light years ahead of their nearest competition
23 Jul 12
Review: Ahead of their hotly anticipated second album, LV are in rabble-rousing Kwaito mode on their new single for Hyperdub. Re-aligning with rowdy MC Okmalumkoolkat on the lead track "Sebenza", it's he who holds the song together with his assured flow while the groove splays manically around neon daubs of melody and hyperactive beats. "Get A Grip" pumps a cheeky trade in peak-time floor wrecking goodness, full of the crafty production that L.V. have made their name on, while "Zulu Compurar" cools things off for a brief stint in technological lyric references and a gentle Funky excursion. As ever the synths rule the day, buzzing and humming with an innate wonkiness that creates the very charm of this singular music.
16 Jul 12
Played by: Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy)
Review: Hyperdub's year of excellence continues apace with the release of Playing Me, the long awaited debut album from Cooly G. Emerging as a key figure in the UK funky scene some four years ago via some highly prized Dub Organiser CDrs, Cooly's musical progression has been charted via a series of EPs for DVA Music and Hyperdub. On this thirteen track album what is most apparent is the confidence this South London producer has in her own singing, a voice that sounds dipped in pain and anguish at times. At others Cooly utilises her vocal delivery as an integral part of the music, which draws from all manner of UK music history of recent times whilst very much sounding part of her modern house template. Oh and there's a Coldplay cover to end the LP too...
01 Oct 12
Review: Morgan Zarate has been causing a stir online with his inventive and melodic take on dubstep. "Broken Heart Collector" is a luxuriantly produced example of electronic pop with heavily compressed layers of emo-synths, urban beats and an infectious melody sung with aplomb by Stevie Neal. "BHC" is a craftily titled instrumental version; although minus the vocals, the tune takes on a more widescreen feel. "Crey Bey" is a digital feast of video game sounds, lasers, hip-hop keyboard riffs and machine gun snares. Recommended.
19 Nov 12
Played by: Chrissy Murderbot, Odiggity, Diplo, Greenmoney, Shox, Cosby (Car Crash Set), Highgrademuzik Aka Don D Selectah
Review: With the energy unleashed by his Pretty Ugly LP still crackling in the atmosphere, DVA drops another EP of technicolour bass mutant business for Hyperdub, delivering seven tracks of mind-bending freshness with a French Fries remix thrown in for good measure. There's some rougher club-ready tackle on offer here such as the abrasive "Do It" with it's hammering drums, but then round the next corner you're plunged into the minimal 4/4 bubble that is "Walk It Out". Really though the lead track "Fly Juice" is the winner with its soulful key licks and hyped up switch for the latter half of the track.
26 Nov 12
Review: Regular Hyperdubber Ossie comes back with this delectable single of neo-soul goodness on "Ignore", providing the perfect backdrop for Tilz's smooth delivery. In between the bluesy key stabs and whip-cracking drums, there's a perfect mixture of club dynamics and pop sensibilities, seemingly typifying the current tone that Hyperdub seems geared towards. "Find It" lets Ossie off the chain into a purely instrumental cut that gives him full scope to zoom in on those razor-sharp drums and bolster them with further layers, while the musical elements veer between chunky Moog basslines and plucked mandolins, and a whole lot more besides.
18 Dec 12
Played by: Alltek Records
19 Feb 13
Played by: The Golden Toyz
19 Feb 13
Review: Liverpool producer Friend Within is a perfect fit with Dirtybird. His hectic, all-action style, previously seen on Hypercolour, bolts bulging, rave-era bass to cocaine house pads and UKG-influenced drums. There's enough depth to please the heads, but more than enough low-end pressure to work gigantic rooms full of sweaty, pie-eyed students to the brink of collective orgasm. Choose between the stab-tastic lead cut, "The Game" - all Robin S riffs and booming basslines - and "The Hollow", a deeper excursion that nevertheless packs more punch than Vitali Klitschko after an all-night amphetamine bender.
25 Feb 13
Review: As the title track on his latest EP attests, Space Dimension Controller is back after a considerable break from the releasing game, with an EP of "deleted scenes" to whet your appetites for his forthcoming debut album. On the strength of the first track, it's already clear that things are different. The tender, melancholic house template has been replaced by a pumped up electro funk workout, rich with 80s boogie synth flourishes, Model 500 drums and an Egyptian-Lover inspired vocal hook about the aforementioned return. It's a drastic switch up, but nailed perfectly. "While I Was Away" cools things off with an aqueous. Italo-dub concoction, and "It's A Cold Planet Without You" heads into a surprisingly breakneck electro rhythm with pneumatic synths of an ambient disposition. Drifting off on the weightless drone of the Eno referencing "Music For Spaceports", SDC has firmly announced his return with a strong update on his previous form.
14 Jan 13
Played by: Juno Recommends Dubstep
Review: Fokuz have been skipping and bounding over the genre lines for a while. From lush, full bodied D&B to deep, dub-tinged garage, their release policy can't be faulted at present. The emo two-step roller "The Art Of Alone" came our way last month via the "After The Fall" EP, and here it's given the treatment by Ambinate (twinkling autonomic deepness), Cross Them Out (breathy sub aquatic breakbeat) and Jernalism (clunky, tripped out two-step). Each one of them bubbles. Get focussed on Fokuz.
13 Jan 13
Played by: Homegroove Project, Fort Knox Five, Mat Cant, Nic Fanciulli, Matta, Tee Circus, Rack N Ruin, Coco Cole, Lucent
Review: Despite only unveiling themselves to the public in 2010, Black Butter Records have already ascended to some impressive heights with a string of hugely popular bass/UKF releases. This first 'proper' label comp features five names from their roster, remixed by many more. It's literally fizzing and popping with retro-futuristic ideas and sounds: from the B-more drum machine orgy of "Be More (3hrs & Woz mix), to Matta's accelerated electro version of Kidnap Kid's classic "Vehl" and Vince Clarke's elasticated tech-house version of "Lazarus Taxon", to the scuzzy, rave-inflected house of Codec's "What You Need", the thoroughly ominous bass tones of "Hackney Heat" by Racknruin via the eccentric end-of the world beats of "Trick Green" by Hostage.
05 Nov 12
Review: Not content with releasing one album on Planet Mu this year, the excellent Hive Mind, Ital returns to the label with another. While Hive Mind was a patient listen, filled with deep, leftfield grooves and cosmic undertones, Dream On feels like a more urgent, fragmented affair, like listening to a half-remembered night in a club; opener "Despot" combines chopped up vocals and rattling percussion and feels like several different club tracks playing at once, while "Boi" employs hyperkinetic footwork rhythms with searing dub techno textures, and "Enrique" provides an immersive trip into distant industrial rhythms. "What A Mess" perhaps encapsulates the album best; a cluttered mass of indistinct voices, textures and loose rhythms that somehow come together to make a fantastically listenable whole. Highly recommended.
23 Sep 12
Review: Under the pseudonym Harmonimix, James Blake was responsible for reconfigring the Destiny's Child classic "Bills Bills Bills" and Lil Wayne's "A Milli", and this record sees the producer go back to that alias along with former Roll Deep member Trim. Using Blake's evocative palette of knackered sonics, "Confidence Boost" whispers with hisses and crackles while Trim's acapella is pitched wildly by Blake to give the uncanny sense he is performing with a backing group comprised of himself. "Saying" is a much more straightforward cut, but Blake's bristling organs and Trim's vocals are evocative of a ghostly shadow of classic grime. If you were one of the many who were turned off when Blake collaborated with Bon Iver, you can pay attention again - this is much more like it.
24 Sep 12
Review: Planet Mu is of course an established and respected portal for UK-inspired electronic music, existing free of boundaries and often purveying music that is both unexpected and complex to grasp on a first listen. Space Zone from juke wunderkind Young Smoke is certainly a wild cocktail of sonics and ideas, but although it may seem like a lot to take in upon first listen, the results are plentiful. The opening title track is a twisted hybrid of future garage, old-school electro and even contains unmistakable pop influences. The rest of the record progresses in a similar fashion, morphing frantically between the crazy, nu-dubstep vibes of "Destroy Him My Robots"; fast-moving shuffles and two-step beats on "Alien Pad"; and even the more melancholic sounds of "Space Breeze" - an irresistibly alluring track which contains elements of everything from electronica to R&B. Space Zone could almost be considered a neo-pop record, and Young Smoke has clearly understood how important it is to integrate and fuse a wide array of styles to create something worthy of more than just a dancefloor.
24 Sep 12
Review: There's something decidedly old skool about this breezer stepper from the Riddim Fruit camp. Boasting a weary but emotion-rich vocal, twinkling melodies, rubbery double bass and retro-futurist two-step beats, the original version of "Step By Step" sits somewhere between the jazzier end of two-step, broken beat and dubstep. It should go down well with those who enjoy the musically developed productions of, say, Maddslinky. The Pulsar remix, meanwhile, adds some heavier bass and a fluid dubstep shuffle, while retaining the original's autumnal beauty.
22 Oct 12
Review: Brighton-based synth-step explorer Alan Myson is nothing if not prolific; Nebula Dance is his third full-length in five years. Like previous excursions, Nebula Dance sees him attempting to join the dots between dubstep rhythms, synth-wave melodies, clattering IDM grooves and the shimmering sweeps of classic electronica. It's a sound dripping with positivity, and the result is an album that somehow manages to sound both self-consciously grandiose and impressively intimate. Tracks like "Intercruise" and "Glokk" bristle with retina-sharp melodies and glistening electronics, all atop rhythms that are seemingly pulling you in different directions. It's a delicious combination, that's for sure.