The Albertans

Dangerous Anything

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Wrapped in gossamer sheets of Krautrock-inspired, heavily chorused analog synths, reverb-drenched, decidedly urban surf guitar, and whispery vocals that suggest a steady diet of Julee Cruise, Broadcast, and Galaxie 500, the third long-player from ambient pop-loving Vancouverites the Albertans rolls in like a cosmic fog over the city and leaves everybody passed out in its wake. To call the ten-track Dangerous Anything hypnotic would be a bit of an understatement, but there's just enough traditional pop architecture here to keep things from completely spiraling off into the inky blue, especially on stand-out cuts like the Ladytron-meets-Twin Peaks pavement pounder "Begin the Beguin," the evocative, spectral, and melodic "Jason," and the snappy, garage rock-informed "Ohio Light and Fire." Largely instrumental tracks like the jarring, industrial-heavy "Invisible Fortress" and the trippy, machine-like opener "Casa Agua" feel as rooted in classic Pink Floyd-imbued psychedelic rock as they do in glitch-filled, modern experimental pop, especially the latter selection, which adds additional elements of no wave and even "Purple Rain"-era Prince into an already heady mix. There are occasional moments of atmospheric overload, however, a deficiency best exemplified by the epic closer "Black Moon," which sounds just like its celestial moniker would suggest, and doesn't do much of anything until about five minutes in, but like any good piece of audio cinema (imagine a more cerebral Luna or a really high Phoenix), Dangerous Anything, taken as a whole, rewards listeners who approach the material with curiosity. Being in the proper head space, so to speak, is encouraged as well.

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