David Penna: Failure to Obey a Traffic Control Device

Penna Station, 2007

Failure to Obey a Traffic Control Device cover

David Penna’s album from late last summer is wonderfully refreshing, making it a perfect choice for the first day of spring. Penna crafts drum and bass beats, but keeps them from sounding dated with sweet, jazzy melodies. “chemicalX” and “SQL” are perfect examples of this approach. Other tracks show signs of Squarepusher inspiration. “Soar Beyond” has fusion elements, with mellow keys over skittering snares. Booming bass, electro runs, and synth strings all manage to meld, building to a soaring melody. “Strange Lights” has a very Tom Jenkinson-esque bass solo, but “Birds of Prey” is definitely off in its own world. Electric guitar chords, acid bass, and amen breaks sound perfectly natural together. Who would have thought?

3/5 stars

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