Battles: La Di Da Di review – still powered by playfulness

(Warp)

Battles’ latest album is a slinky joy. The New York math-rave outfit made their name as an experimental rock band crossed with a party animal – largely instrumental, but with treated vocals most often deployed as textures. Save for some yelling on Summer Simmer, this third effort dispenses with the reliance on singers that characterised its predecessors. Drawing on intricate grooves, sinuous loops, systems music and non-Western sources, these 12 tracks remain powered by playfulness, rather than the desire to overcomplicate and exclude that often accompanies non-linear music. For every urgent tune like the cinematic Non-Violence (whose bass jabs are pretty muscular), there are inspired variations, like the dreamy calm of Cacio e Pepe or the bejewelled hamminess of Megatouch.

Contributor

Kitty Empire

The GuardianTramp

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