Love Hustler / Take to the Stares
February 22, 2018
Tear a page out of a 1985 yearbook, polish up your vocoder and get pumped with the electro-funk of Love Hustler’s new EP, Take the Stares. The four-song album is the perfect escape from the more modern sounds that electronic music had grown to include. Sure, the synthesizers and Daft Punk-inspired vocals are running rampant, but the tempos are moderate and the grooves are plenty. Take the Stares could be the perfect thing to listen to before going out for the night. It’s low-key enough to multi-task during, but funky enough to get your hips shaking while getting ready. Think a less indie Chromeo started a band with 2013-era Daft Punk (with all their Chic-ness) and just a dash of LMFAO, though nothing more than a dash because that would be too much.
The album starts off with “Sinderella,” basically the ideal song to give you all you need to know about what you’re in for with the duo of Matt Cashdollar and Adam Rudolph. The vocoder and the clean, higher pitched vocals are a time machine of sorts and prove the music wouldn’t have been an outlier in the 80s. “New Relation” starts off with a straight “Billie Jean”-esque drumbeat followed by electric piano/organ and reverb-y synthesizers which are soon accompanied by that sweet talk-box we’ve come (by now) to appreciate from the LH gang.
“New Relation” and the following “Don’t Go” are anchored (in a good way) by instrumental breaks that keep the songs fresh and enjoyable without forcing too many verses that don’t mean anything or get in the way. “Don’t Go” starts off with bongos, but builds via a drumbeat, spacey synths and funky, quirky guitar for over two minutes until it joins the vocals. Said vocals aren’t entirely necessary, as the song is good enough by itself, though the vocals are kept simple with just one line, so it only adds to the already-in-progress instrumental jammer.
The EP ends with “Something Fun” which, at almost seven minutes, is more Chromeo-meets-Rick James than Daft Punk. With more singing and a bit less vocoder, you get a groovier, more sensual song with instrumental breaks that combine all kinds of styles including 20s jazz and 70s funk. Because of these breaks, the length of the song is forgiven and the listener is left to shimmy while wanting more from these veterans of Fort Wayne’s music scene.