Bouncing along in the style of Gold Panda, Michna, and sometimes even Plone, N.Y.C.-based producer Drew Lustman (aka FaltyDL) continues to marry the amiable and abstract on Hardcourage, a bold title for what's really a quirky joy. Imagine hazy memories of hanging with Kraftwerk and Prince as Disney's Main Street Electrical Parade goes by and you're close to the allure of "Stay I'm Changed," since the bleepy cute soundtracks of the Magic Kingdom's Perrey & Kingsley come to mind throughout this strange journey. In their style, a synth imitates a stoned stumble during "Kenny Rolls One," and the great "Korben Dallas" uses something close to a tennis shoe squeak for its hook, but Lustman isn't strictly out for giggles, as "Straight Arrow" slowly pumps with a well-cooled house beat. Then there's the great flotation experience that "Uncea" offers, along with the thought that FaltyDL is Aphex Twin with no malice, and if Mumford & Sons need a remixer, they only need to listen to the warm sweater of a closer called "Bells" to find their sentimental, nostalgic soulmate. If this all sounds too adorable or too Zooey Deschanel, there's a serious respect for funk, groove, house music, and glitch to be found here, plus Lustman was signed to the sometimes difficult Planet Mu label for a spell, so prepare to be challenged, just a touch. Hardcourage is a rich experience that rewards return visits. Add a near perfect flow from start to finish, and this fun bundle of irresistible future garage can be considered crafted, even when the spirit is as easy as Sunday morning.
AllMusic Review by David Jeffries