Slaptop - With You
You may have never heard of Slaptop, however that is not from a lack of quality. Touring festivals and banging out electronic gigs the San Francisco native blends House, Disco and techno into a really sunny mix. It is almost if Odesza decided to lean a little harder on the disco aspect of their music, still using trippy tones and arrangements but always coming back to the dance heart in the end. The parallel can also be drawn in His use of featured vocalists. Instead of going with the powerful female voice which is all to often the case in Electronic music Slaptop mixes it up and uses more interesting vocals. Will Fraker's vocal on "Passenger" is odd at first, yet it takes on this life all it's own eventually really creating something fun. You can also tell how much DJing Slaptop has done in the past because the album flows and moves with such ease. He knows just when to take you high and when to take you low blending those feelings seamlessly throughout the record. There is also a very distinct lack of borders on this album, something that Electronic music and Hip Hop have really embraced as of late. It is not about finding your genre and sticking in that vein, it is about blending a life long love of music into your own creativity. Slaptop does this extremely well bringing tunes that would work from a beach club in Ibiza to a gritty LA after hours.
Unlike Odesza however Slaptop really succeeds when his singers are using real words. The more ethereal tracks are fine, and somewhat breezy, but his strength lies in making the music people want to sing along to. "What I Mean" features a very strong verse from Tate Kobang over this really stripped down track. There are times during the song where these little sparkly flourishes come in and just elevate the track to entirely new heights. "Jump Into" which begins with this Spanish Guitar making you think it will be some kind of World Music exploration ends up being something totally different and totally fun. It there is one critique some of the slower songs like "Come Down" tend to drag a bit and really make Slaptop feel more generic than He is. A song like "Palm" just comes out of no where being the most techno/trance driven track. It would likely be lost in the House and Disco first half of the record but because Slaptop slows down the pace and prepares you for it before it comes it feels just right. With You is really just a stellar debut, so watch out for big things from Slaptop in 2017.
8.4 out of 10