Lindstrøm | Six Cups of Rebel | Review
We may not like everywhere he goes, but Lindstrøm is still taking us places.
If 2008’s Where You Go I Go Too didn’t establish it as fact, his sprawling 40-minute meditation on “Little Drummer Boy” surely did: Lindstrøm makes music to his own beat. Hailed as the leading player in Norway’s cosmic dance scene, the not-quite-so-little drummer boy treats sounds like the final frontier, always searching the far corners of his musical influences and his imagination, and pouring the discoveries into his epic productions.
Lindstrøm reminds us of this with the solo church-organ aria of “No Release” that opens Six Cups of Rebel. The bass pop and P-Funk of lead single “De Javu” will seem familiar to fans of the driving dance-floor disco-boogie on his more populist remixes, but this is the first time the lanky producer has lent his own voice to a track. It makes a dynamic new addition to his arsenal.
The record also sees Lindstrøm reining in his compulsion for marathon songs, prefering seamless transitions that leave few discernible beginnings or ends. “Quiet Place to Live” is an exception, disrupting both the flow and the mood by moving into prog territory with distorted riffs and a guitar wail. Drawing comparisons to rock acts like Deep Purple or Queen had they “gone disco,” the change in style here and during the cacophony of cheap MIDI sounds on “Call Me Anytime” left me longing for the space-age house of Lindstrøm on releases past.
Nordic cosmonaut gets back in the groove for Six Cups of Rebel’s final movements, successfully combining the chunkier krautrock elements with a celestial sheen and a Weather Report–style jazz funk. The album’s title track sounds like five or six musicians rolled into one. As the song winds down and each element gets stripped away to leave only layers of menacing laughter, we’re reminded that this music rebel is taking us places—whether we like them or not.