Minneapolis guitarist/keyboardist Paul Sebastien and Daniel Lenz are the duo Psykosonik. Against a sonic palette of electronic squeaks,squawks, and warm synth beds that are reminiscent of early synth artists such as Kraftwerk (the beats and analog synth sounds), the System (stylish songwriting/rock-synth motifs), Britain's Dead or Alive and Chicago house pioneer Larry Heard aka Mr. Fingers, they've come up with a satisfying mix of ambient, melodic techno on their second album. Along with atmospheric soundscapes such as the gentle bubbling "Secret Life," and the soothing "The Breathing Room," there are dancefloor workouts like the title track and the funky rockin' "Ride," with its mean hot guitar riff. Some of the album's instrumentals could be used as music beds for a possible revival of the Dr. Who series. Good lyrics have a place on this album. On the thumpin' funk "Need to Die," they impart optimism: "face your fears alone/and make them fly/when your dreams come home/you don't need to die." Through their creative use of the technology and emphasis on songs, Psykosonik appeals to both the head and the feet. Unleash Unlearn and you wont be disappointed.
by Ed Hogan