Review Summary: Steal mom's car and crank up the bass.
Just last weekend I decided to watch the movie “Drive” starring Ryan Gostling as the badass Driver character. I thought it was a really impressive film; the acting was wonderful, the cinematography was stellar and the music…damn, the music was my favorite part. The film’s intro featured an ethereal, lush electronic track by the French electro-house producer, Kavinsky. This song got famous simply because of this film and it’s not like I would have heard it otherwise. I’m not an electronic music buff in the slightest; I’ve only listened to IDM (Aphex Twin, Autechre) and british Big Beat bands like the Prodigy, the Chemical Brothers, etc. The track, titled “Nightcall”, was stuck in my head immediately. I’m glad to say that because of “Drive”, I found a great batch of songs.
Kavinsky’s production scheme is that of 80’s electro pop; opulent and massive. He records most of his material on a Yamaha DX7. There’s a myriad of French electro-house producers out there but Kavinsky stands out from the pack with his nostalgia laced jams and his fresh songwriting that doesn’t rely too heavily on bass or redundant drops. This is Kavinsky’s 3rd album; his first two went relatively unnoticed by critics and fans alike, making this release a smart one due to it being better than his previous albums. He gets a bit redundant at times, but that proves to be a small issue rather than a big one.
The main highlight of the album isn’t the title track. Surprisingly, its film feature doesn’t make it the best track on the LP. Instead, in my opinion, the highlight of the LP is “Pacific Coast Highway”. The title track makes the listener feel a brush of confidence while this one is total badass-ery. Samples from what would appear to be a cop show of sorts, this track makes the listener put the pedal to the metal and bump so even the deaf, senile elderly folk of the neighborhood can hear it. This track dances through the ears with 80’s electro swagger, leaving the listener feeling the need for speed.
In essence, Kavinsky’s third disc entitled “Nightcall” proves to be an illustration of how something from back in the day can sound original even in nowadays’ culture. The listener has a fun experience on their hands with this one; these 80’s electro pop inspired tracks will have you pumping your fists as if you were the champion of the city. Flaws include general redundancy, but it won’t bring the album down too far for whoever’s listening. I recommend that you get the first two tracks only, because the remixes are well…remixes and not good ones at that. This should satisfy anybody looking for a cool sounding soundtrack to the late night excursions in the car. Bump these tunes, kids.