Battles, “La Di Da Di”

Battles_La-Di-Da-Di_coverBattles
La Di Da Di
WARP
8/10

Wisdom doesn’t always come with age—if that were true, Kanye West and Donald Trump wouldn’t still be making headlines. But as far as music and sex go, getting older inevitably calms down whoever is performing it. Battles are a case in point, with their third album finding the thirteen-year-old experimental group more at ease than ever before. At no point does their sound come across as anxiously cluttered or antagonistically minimal; in fact, bleeps and bloops have never sounded so naturally birthed. Indeed, Battles are one of indie rock’s best bands and one of the least obnoxious acts in techno. Unlike their 2007 debut Mirrored and 2011’s Gloss Drop, which featured vocals by former band member Tyondai Braxton and a carousel of guest singers, respectively, Battles eschew vocals this time around. As a result, the album is more of a somatic experience than a cerebral one (perhaps it’s no coincidence that one of the strongest songs is called “Megatouch”). It might be too jammy for some, especially those who glommed onto Mirrored. But either way, the adroit La Di Da Di provides clear instruction to aspiring younger artists: You will find your sound, so relax.

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