Johan Skugge

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The opening cut on Johan Skugge's second full-length, "Bring Me On," might be the first track post-Present Lover to compete with Luomo's profound mode of minimal house, and that is an extreme compliment for this former Swedish rock player who's most high-profile gig to date has been frequent partnering with freakish Euro-crooner Jay Jay Johanson. Although melding the same ice-dub template as Luomo, Skugge allows his programming to move in more arid directions, with extra clicks and bleeps on the tip and a stronger shuffle at the base. But beyond the seductive vocals on the lead track, "Forevermen" bounces buoyantly while "Drop LFO" buzzes as much as it shimmers. The title track returns to the Luomo template with excellent results and "Silencio" utilizes more robo-hussy licks on your earlobe, but this isn't just mimicry. Or perhaps it is, but with the inspired pop vocal on "Implosion," it's clear that following the leader is a sure way to learn such excellent tricks, all of which Skugge has on display here.

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