(Ring the Alarm)
Nobody does retro synth quite like KRON. The Los Angeles trio are known for their gamey, sometimes horroristic production and have finally released their debut album, Raptoid. The project follows the group’s 2016 self-titled EP, and with Raptoid, KRON dives into a futuristic world of horror-synth, where most tracks are capable of turning any gathering into a dark and tropical dance party.
KRON lay down vocals reminiscent of Daft Punk on “NeoKong”, which just happens to be the only vocalized track on all of Raptoid. Production alone, some songs do get off to a slower start, like “Valley of The Wind” or on the opening track “Proof You’re Gone”, where despite nice and crispy xylophone-like synths, the song never develops into anything more. Even the title track, “Raptoid” takes a second before fully winding up into a full on retro synth wonderland, filled with pulsing energy and sweet dance breaks.
The eight track album presents a range of vibes from tame and spacey to groovy and trancy. Despite a first half that doesn’t blow away expectations, some of our favorite tracks on Raptoid land on the back end of the project. On “Fondu Sunset”, drawing basslines and dark techno contrast nicely with the bright and poppy synths that show up shortly after. “Starlight Zone” feels like a song straight from a Donkey Kong or Mario game, and the track “Arcane Sanctuary” similarly has a video gamey atmosphere, sounding something like a retro first person shooter soundtrack.
Raptoid is a passable attempt at modern horror-synth with a retro twist. The group that describes their sound as a “Mortal Kombat safari”, surely come through with nostalgic video game feels, but unfortunately stray from this focus and generally lack cohesion just about half of the time. When KRON does hit the mark, they come through with mesmerizing and danceable electronic music. Be sure to check out KRON’s debut album Raptoid for yourself.