Trust Joyland

Trust Joyland
8
On his debut LP, 2012's Juno-nominated TRST, Robert Alfons (a.k.a. Trust) presented listeners, literally and figuratively, with a unique voice. Falling somewhere between Peter Murphy and Count Chocula, Alfons surrounds his midnight delivery with bright, pulsating pop beats, creating a sonic dichotomy that is quite uncommon in modern electronic music.

On Joyland, his sophomore LP, Alfons dives deeper into the peripherals, exploring unabashedly huge dancefloor beats while pushing his vocals even deeper into the mix. Casting broad synth chords anchored by throbbing digital kick drums, tracks like saturnine opener "Slightly Floating," motorik drive-by "Are We Arc?" and rock steady closer "Barely" evince that Alfons is clearly looking to unload a wider net of moods and modes on Joyland. Although a few tracks ("Geryon," "Four Gut") suffer from muddy and unfocused melodies, there are far too many great ideas, quirky earworms and sonic peaks to give any critic reason to lampoon the title of this well-conceived, well-executed album.

Read an interview with Alfons here. (Arts & Crafts)