Last summer I saw Kleptix perform in a barn at Bluelight, a fantastic festival in rural Wisconsin. Dressed in a white bodysuit and dancing hard to his sounds, Troy Peterson put on a hell of a show. Peterson is a busy man, recording as both Kleptix and House of Lud. He constantly creates new sights and sounds, often by tweaking and modifying used and broken devices.
The latest Kleptix release, “Flight Sequence,” finds Peterson further exploring beat-driven electronic sounds. Although I found some of his earlier work harsh and industrial, this album possesses more of an ‘80s soundtrack vibe. In fact, “Flight Sequence” is an apt title, as the retro-futuristic music is often propelled by uptempo beats. In keeping with the soundtrack aesthetic, there are recurring themes throughout the album—for example, in some ways “Shadowplay” is a half-time variant of its precursor, “Cognitive Dissonance.”
While the instrumentals that comprise the album function well as backing tracks to one’s day, they also command the listener’s attention. This isn’t some Jan Hammer/Beverly Hills Cop pastiche crap here—the songwriting is solid, with a laudable lack of filler and no interest in overstaying its welcome.
The songs on “Flight Sequence” would not be out of place in a car chase scene or training montage, but are far more sophisticated than looped sketches. While some people get lost in the gear and forget to write the song, Kleptix deftly utilizes his palette of electronic sounds to create driving, melodic music.