ANTI-POP CON­SOR­TIUM Flu­o­res­cent Black (Big Dada Record­ings)

Pasatiempo - - Cd Reviews -

Last au­tumn saw the release of a fu­tur­is­tic hip-hop con­cept al­bum that ev­ery fan of the genre should hear, and it’s not Kid Cudi’s Man on the Moon: The End of Day. That al­bum is a mas­sive hit, but if you want the real deal, leave Cudi on the shelf and hit up Flu­o­res­cent Black in­stead. With a loose over­rid­ing theme about trans­form­ing from or­ganic to ar­ti­fi­cial be­ings, the quar­tet— re­turn­ing to action af­ter an ex­tended hia­tus— lets loose a wide range of styles and sounds, beginning with the dis­cor­dant elec­tric-gui­tar shred­ding that opens the record. “Shine” is con­cise hip-hop sto­ry­telling about a painter who tan­gles with the Rus­sian mafia. “Born Elec­tric” comes off like the mu­sic of a hip-hop Meat­loaf. “End Game” uses the vo­cals as an off-kil­ter, IDM-es­que beat on which to set off a fire­works dis­play of retro elec­tronic ef­fects. Fresh sounds zip through the pe­riph­ery of this ever-sur­pris­ing record. But like ev­ery mod­ern hip-hop al­bum, Flu­o­res­cent Black is way too long at 17 songs. Anti-Pop Con­sor­tium have pulled off a grand, cin­e­matic vi­sion here, but they shouldn’t have made an al­bum that feels as long as a movie. How­ever, for hip-hop heads, this qual­i­fies as a good prob­lem to have.

— Robert Ben­ziker

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