Beastie Respond

Information City

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Information City Review

by Paul Simpson

Tobias Pedersen's second full-length under the Beastie Respond moniker is a dense, fast-paced set of genre-splicing tracks that aims to sonically interpret the world's restless media consumption. Pedersen has never been easy to pigeonhole; he started out releasing experimental drum'n'bass 12"s (one of which included a remix by techno don Blawan) before releasing a debut full-length mainly consisting of neon synth-funk in the same ballpark as Com Truise. Released in 2017, Information City is much busier and flashier than Pedersen's past work, pulling in the frantic tempos of footwork and drum'n'bass as well as the toughness of trap and the futuristic sheen of electro. Opener "Real Without Origin" combines speedy, swooping metallic beats with starry melodic breakdowns, alternating between hyped-up club dynamics and reflection. "We Never Truly Understood the Architecture" is perhaps the most drum'n'bass-esque track here, threading intricate beats through a minefield of aggressive bass bursts and smashing glass. "They Mobilized Ignorance and Slack" is a full-throttle Detroit-influenced electro track with fast-paced jazz-funk synth riffs and detailed edits. The album's ecstatic title track is Rustie-level giddy, with glittery synth arpeggios set to accelerate, and deconstructed beats that smack hard. "A Good Wisdom" is somehow even more playful, evoking images of some sort of cyber clown rave. A few other tracks refrain from beats, instead mixing plastic, crystalline '80s synth tones with sludgy, distorted static. Information City is a truly breathtaking album that creatively channels the frenzy of the social media age into exhilarating postmodern dance music.

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