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CD REVIEW

Tycho: Awake

by Ryan Reed on March 17, 2014

On 2011’s Dive, Scott Hansen crafted blissful electro-psych melancholy, weaving spacey synths and beats into rich melodic tapestries. On Awake, he works within a more expansive and organic framework, fashioning Tycho into a pseudo-rock outfit by adding a live guitarist and rhythm section. At its most compelling, this new approach adds muscle and forward-motion to Hansen’s trance-y jams. The opening title track is a lush swirl of evocative melody, pairing a U2-styled electric guitar line with chiming keyboards and an unrelenting drum-bass thrust. But that initial spark quickly settles into a stagnant formula, albeit a sonically pleasing one: The tranquil “L” stretches out a four-minute atmosphere into an infinity, while “See” climbs to a formidable dance-rock peak then gazes blankly into the sunset. Awake gets sleepier the longer it plays.

Authors: Ryan Reed
Artist: Tycho
Album: Awake
Label: Ghostly International

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