Tuff City Kids - Adolescent album review: light and nimble with some luscious hooks

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Artist: Tuff City Kids
Genre: Electronic
Label: Permanent Vacation

As producers go, Running Back main man Gerd Janson and serial collaborator Phillip Lauer are pretty nifty operators who can craft infectious, left-of-centre house grooves.

After a hefty slew of tracks and reixes, their debut album as Tuff City Kids is full of well-turned out sounds where the light, nimble, backlit wash of synths and drum rolls create some luscious hooks to hang everything on. In the case of Labyrinth, one of the album's standout moments, they've also got Norwegian pop star Annie to supply the drama and the tender, airy vocals.

Collaborators like Hot Chip's Joe Goddard (Tell Me) and Kelley Pollar (on the beautifully strung out Aska) give the album a truly fresh momentum, though the trippy psychy synth wig-out of R-Mancer and the soulful melancholy of Farewell House also deserve acclaim.