Lane 8 - Little By Little
Little by Little
I had this odd feeling in 2017, it wasn't only Trump though I'm sure his election played a big roll in it, but electronic music felt like it took a big dive this year. There were a few standouts, but nothing like 2016 with Tycho or 2015 with Jamie xx. That transcendent album never materialized and everything came with so much weight to it as EDM and Tropical house faded into obscurity. Well Lane 8 is finally back to save the day. It's been sometime since we've heard from the producer in the album form but his highly popular "This Never Happened" tour and mixtapes have kept the audience satiated. Little By Little feels incredibly fresh even if the tones and sounds seem familiar. Throughout the record you will hear little nods to the past like on "Atlas" where this super classic house hand clap punctuates the entire song. In other places you'll hear almost Deadmau5-esque techno elements bleeding in but instead of being reverential and putting these things on a pedestal Lane 8 pushes those sounds forward and blends them in to his aesthetic. He doesn't get to bogged down with making each track flow into the next here, but you can see in alive show where He would pull all the strings together to make this a unified piece with his other tracks. The title track is the most techno on the record with these fantaasic bleeps and bops just punctuating every single note. It feels like the beat is endless and you can imagine yourself, in a dark room surrounded by sweaty people as this thing blares away, it's exactly what you want from a dance record.
Often times with this kind of music the cut down versions feel like they are missing something the extended cuts have, but not here, Lane 8 doesn't really seem to give a shit about radio play or conforming to some kind of norm for a label. You can hear it in his lyrics as well, these aren't the typical "let's take back the night" bullshit EDM stuff, He has something to say with these words and emotions to convey. Lane 8 feels like the less poppy version of Odesza, not that Odesza is all out pop, but they do side more with adding a big name singer to songs rather than diving deep into the sound as Lane 8 does. He is constantly exploring with his music and reaching for something new in each and every track. The environment of Little By Little is so ethereal but the songs themselves are grounded hard by their House Music bones. This record is simply fantastic and the first great ones of 2018. Lane 8 just continues to impress time after time.
8.9 out of 10