Russian ElectroPoppers Tesla Boy’s début album, Modern Thrills, is one of our favourite albums of all time. Back in 2009 the totally nail everything that was so good about the burgeoning Dreamwave and post-Dreamwave Nu-Disco scenes and wrapped all that smooth LA funk and 80s soundtrack epicness with Pop sensibilities and incredibly catchy songs. Their sophomore full length release, The Universe Made Of Darkness, out this week, has been on rotation here for the past couple of weeks after a first few nervous listens. This album has so much to live up to, so many expectations, we just didn’t know if it would deliver.
It does. In abundance. Tesla Boy’s sound had only matured on this release, there’s a greater width of influences and more attention to detail. The Russian’s have managed to release an album that sounds quite a bit different to their premier record, but still unmistakably Tesla Boy. The album still retains the cool Disco vibe, the epic songs, but has a larger scope, and a bigger sound. Kicking of with Dream Machine, a smooth piece of arena SynthPop that weaves a proggy vibe into it’s 80s LA funk, the album soon launces into Tesla Boy’s most recent single, the energetic, anthemic, M.C.H.T.E. before bringing the groove right back on Invisible. Invisible is a laid back, but powerful, track that mixes a poolside feel with huge grinding synths and is indicative of Tesla Boy retaining their cool boogie, but making it so much more expansive. Up next is Broken Doll, which features the awesome Tyson. The perfect cool, dirty Disco tune that makes a brilliant platform for Tesla Boy’s Anton, and Tyson, two ElectroPop heavyweights to duet. Wicked Disco licks and slab bass rub shoulders with gritty synths and a relentless mid-tempo pounding. Broken Doll will be the bands next single. Previous single Split is up next, with a little old school Tesla Boy nostalgia, as with another (quite) old single Fantasy that follows. Saturn is the first of a couple of musical interludes, a beautiful and haunting 80s soundtrack-esque piece with a slight oriental feel and a surprising highlight of The Universe Made Of Darkness. Undetected is a bass heavy Nu-Disco bouncer that blends a little 80s UK Pop into the thick, warbling slo-mo funk that is complimented by the shimmering keys and hazy 80s Soul of Start. After the abstract bass House interlude of Something Deep, we are hit with Paraffin, which features Fritz from Azari & III. Paraffin is full on RoboPop Disco, an energetic, kinetic, but ultimately slick meeting of Chicago House and Dreamwave where everyone’s a winner. Which leaves the album to play out on the full-on early 90s DancePop of the single 1991. So there it is. The Universe Made Of Darkness was one of, if not the, most anticipated album of the years for us, and we are so relieved to say, it’s awesome.
♫ Tesla Boy – M.C.H.T.E.
♫ Tesla Boy (Feat.Tyson) – Broken Doll
♫ Tesla Boy – Stars
♫ Tesla Boy – 1991
♫ Tesla Boy (Feat. Fritz Helder from Azari & III) – Parrafin
Tesla Boy’s new album The Universe Made Of Darkness, is out now. The Broken Doll single is out soon.
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