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Desire Lines

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Album Review

Desire lines are undesignated paths created by foot-traffic erosion simply because they're where people want to go. Desire Lines walks — strolls, ambles, struts (occasionally), and yes, meanders — down well-trodden and welcoming musical trailways, toward no destination in particular, just for the simple pleasures of the journey. The routes are familiar and instinctually inviting, even if the signage is vague and imprecise: dub, psychedelic, downtempo, ambient, post-rock, folk, with occasional spur trails pointed toward the Tropics, or the discotheque, or into outer space. (Because Meanderthals are a triumvirate of dance producers, the road map reads "electronica," even if most of the sounds come from instruments being played in a room — an Oslo studio to be specific — during a handful of loosely convened live recording sessions.) The clearest, newest-looking signpost is marked "Balearic Disco," and indeed, mirrored shards of diasporic disco fallout are littered liberally along the way, though rarely are they spiky enough to spur feet into action. Mostly we glide by, basking in the sun-drenched acoustic strums and steel-pan patters of "Kunst or Ars," wallowing in the murky bass and intoxicating haze of "1-800-288-Slam," lingering amid the languid pulse and pianistic ruminations of "Bugges of Room." Fussless and fluid, loose but never lazy, Desire Lines is another fine feather in the caps of Rune Lindbaek and Idjut Boys, who now take their place alongside fellow travelers Studio, Hatchback, and Quiet Village as creators of some of the finest, hippest, and coolest chillout music of the late 2000s. ~ K. Ross Hoffman, Rovi


Formed: 2008 in Oslo, Norway

Genre: Dance

Years Active: '00s

The aptly named Meanderthals are a collaborative project between two longtime dance music fixtures: the London-based DJ/production duo Idjut Boys (Dan Tyler and Conrad McConnell) and Norwegian electronica veteran Rune Lindbaek. Drawing on their shared love of eclectic left-field disco, Meanderthals favor live instrumentation over overtly electronic sounds, and emphasize the mellower, psychedelic, and decidedly dub-influenced strains of the late-2000s Balearic trend. Though the participants had been...
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Desire Lines, Meanderthals
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