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Com Truise, Nosaj Thing, Cleopold

  • Majestic 115 King Street Madison, WI, 53703 United States (map)

When considering the many shards of influence that Los Angeles-based producer Com Truise has pulled from faddy Internet genres like chillwave, retrofied bloghouse, and brostep, it’s remarkable that mastermind Seth Haley's liberally compressed and arpeggio-happy work has achieved such longevity and prominence. The execution of this year’s Iteration is expertly polished, arranged, and detailed, but it’s tough to hear tunes like the slow and sentimental “Propagation” or crawling, Italo-flavored jam “Ternary” and not feel beaten upside the head with hard 1980s nostalgia. The overt polish makes the music feel as though it’s being jammed through the musical equivalent of some tacky photo-filter app that makes your selfies look like fading Polaroids. That said, the drifty slow-jam “Isostacy" feels refreshing in its space and restraint, when compared with the rest of the album. And there’s a lot to like about Iteration—the sound design is massive, it’s catchy as hell, and it’s definitely cohesive. But Com Truise really hasn’t evolved much in the last several years and is beginning to feel like pandering festival electronica. Vintage sonics certainly have their place, but it would be nice to hear something more personal from such an absurdly talented producer. —Joel Shanahan