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MemoriɅl BeɅch: The BrilliɅnt Belief in Ʌll Those LɅNights

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5 notesThe plane shoots out over the Pacific Ocean and angles ever so slightly. I look down. It is dark but you can see that there are piers below; long stretches of wood in man’s attempt to walk on water. The dark green of the ocean reflects upwards; rippling as the waves roll against the endless wall of sandy beaches below. The breakers are like white fists against sand. As we continue to head back toward land, the Pacific Coast Highway, that beautiful ribbon of road that runs from one beach town to the next up and down the coast buzzes with lights and people in motion.

And then there is the city of Los Angeles breaking through the distance. The plane barrels toward the heavens and continues to angle upwards, burying the buildings of Wilshire Boulevard in the clouds. There is home. That sacred place. The place I still dream of. A palace refined in memory. Where things “DON’T STOP” and remain warm and sweet, all lit up and full of electricity. Where things make sense and are colored pure. It is that home I search for. In all the faces. In all the ways I took to the city, to the sky. Home.

And so I am flying over a place where people have lights right behind their eyes. Brilliant lights of the city you can never really leave behind or doubt…

La NIGHTSWhen I think of Los Angeles, I remember my time there and, had this music producing duo from the UK existed when I was departing, their debut album, LɅNights. would have been the atmospheric soundtrack I needed to hear. Hell, there’s a chance with highs this clear – I’m looking to you “ALL NIGHT” – that I never would have left the shiny city of silver and bronze. The songs on this release from RetroSynth Records are THAT strong and ALREADY influential on the scene; their impact will be felt for months to come.

Romantic and moody, this 8-track release is full of lush and solid electronic sounds that pierce the inky blacks of any midnight. This record is smooth and moody, making the most of its all too brief running time. The debut album from LɅNights is a synthwave champion.

 

With the high energy hit of its commanding first track, “TIME”, an idyllic song cycle kicks off and it won’t stop until the break of (the LɅ) Dawn.

 Make no mistake, LɅNights is a remarkable new voice in the genre. Absolutely captivating with medley and pulse-pounding beats, this dynamic release quickly rises to the surface in a synthetic sea of blips and bleeps thanks to a serious commitment to natural buildups and emotional breaks, all solidified by a chorus of what sounds like electronic angels guiding each song’s development. Seriously.

With the high energy hit of its commanding first track, “TIME”, an idyllic song cycle kicks off and it won’t stop until the break of (the LɅ)Dawn.

Track by track, the stellar productions that flow from this release are like candy for the ears – awash with electronic intricacies – that make beautifully-timed melodies all about embracing the here and the now. This release is a statement to what can be done when boundaries are pushed, songs are broken to their core elements (as none of these tracks cross 3-minutes), and a full-bodied intelligence is at the helm. Tracks like “CITY Ʌ GHOST” and “CRYSTɅLISE” are as haunting as they are danceable and they never fail to elicit a response from the listener. Chills.

La NIGHTSThe synth-driven guitars in tracks like “WILD” are sun-kissed with permanent influences and makes this release crackle with solid leads, strong evolutions of sound, and kinetic beat that simply won’t back down from the stories of space and long city nights that this duo is expressing. One listener can appreciate a song like “VOICE” for the celebration of neon that it is and another can pick it apart, analyzing its construction. Both are not wrong in their appreciation for the sounds this duo has created.

The duo’s use of electronic “voices” simply elevates their soundscapes. If it sounds like a gimmick then know that this release is both Daft and Punk and, clocking in under a cool 25-minutes, makes for easy repeat listening while you cruise through your neon city and beyond. It works. I dare you to not make their final statement, “OUTLɅNDS” your theme song through the unknown and ravaged lands of your own imagination.    

To me, this release is like one big party on Memorial Beach, a place where the darkness is cut only by neon as the girl you like dances alone. It is a place where damn near anything is possible. As “DON’T STOP” suggests, “believe in the lights tonight” and…

Make.

Your.

Move.

 

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