Tycho | Dive

Ghostly International (2011)
By REYAN ALI  |  November 29, 2011
3.5 3.5 Stars

tycho-main

In order to appreciate Dive properly, you'll need one thing: headphones. Listening through a pair is crucial for enjoying the many facets of this downbeat marvel from Tycho (otherwise known as San Francisco's Scott Hansen). Dive deploys a vast array of effects, but uses them all economically, making proper use of sweet, unintelligible female crooning, synth lines that can squeal and whisper with equal impact, spacey, sub–Sonic the Hedgehog blips, understated acoustic guitar, and the soft rhythm of rolling tides. All those elements add up to a wonderfully nuanced record. (At its worst, it can be a little dull.) Fundamentally, Dive is an electronica album, but along the way it thoughtfully references other genres. Its sleek and economical construction brings post-punk to mind, its synth textures sport the imaginative color of shoegaze guitars, and it features the enormous rises and crescendos of post-rock. Speaking of which, Tycho's preferred style of music sometimes recalls Air, but Dive is most evocative of Explosions in the Sky's The Earth Is Not a Cold Dead Place, what with its many gorgeous hues. Throw on those headphones and head heavenward.
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