Lost Tapes of 88 - Lost Tapes of 88

Released: April 5

A side-project of Brazilian producer Quizzik, Lost Tapes of 88 is a fun little ride that effectively combines the finer nostalgic points of synthwave and outrun styles with the type of boundary pushing IDM that Quizzik typically offers up. Even though he's going in for the fuzzy memories of the late 80's aesthetic, don't expect a flat out synthwave album like you might be used to. Quizzik takes time and pains to really infuse his own preferences here while still loosely conforming to the conventions of the genre. Probably the closest this album comes to straight synthwave is the fourth track "Testarossa." But even then, the electro influences still control the track with a solid rhythm and a killer bassline that forcefully drives its way into your brain (in a good way, I promise).  

There are a few tracks that really stood out for me, mainly because they take a far more melodic approach to their songwriting with a focus on the synths while giving the crisp drums a bit of a backseat. First, there's the track right after the "Testarossa, " a cold war inspired slow wave "KGB." The synths take the front seat here with two or three synths that alternate on the melody and clever use of vocal samples speaking in often indistinct Russian. The rhythm is there, but it simply adds to the laid-back feel of the track overall and gives that synthwork room to shine. There is also the final track on the album, "Trapped in a Flashback," which kind of cleverly sums up the album in a fun way. But this is another track where the synthwork really shines with a subdued rhythm that seems to take some cues from modern hip-hop as well the IDM influence felt throughout the album. 

Quizzik has made something that is just a perfect fusion of genres that orbits around a sense of nostalgia for the late 80s. The synths are reminiscent of the time period but have that crisp modern production while much of the drums emulate that old school drum machine feel, namely the 808 before it just became another word for heavy bass kicks. It's chill at the right times with enough energetic tracks to keep you up for that late night drive around a brightly illuminated city. 


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