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Son Lux

We are Rising


Jun 10, 2011 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Plenty of people listen to NPR, but few take orders from it. Meet, then, young composer Ryan Lott, aka Son Lux, who recorded We are Rising in 28 days as part of All Songs Considered‘s double dare to musicians to record and finish an album in the month of February.

Critics had already lauded Lott for his 2008 debut album, At War With Walls & Mazes, which brimmed with his brand of electropop pastiche and religious musings and cemented his credibility as an adept composer. In February, he shelved the music he was working on for that album’s follow-up to record Rising, a searing collection of hallucinatory chambertronica with a ghostly soul.

While genre-bending composers are hot right now—think tUnE-yArDs and Wild Beasts—Lott drives deeper as he embraces synthesized beats without ignoring craft. Spooky and eccentric, his music recalls both a mopier Polyphonic Spree and at times, Radiohead, except that Thom Yorke was never as fond of random squeals of piccolo.

The best moments come when Lott dabs surprising elements onto his dreamscape tableaus, such as frenetic violins on “Let Go.” He maneuvers bass drop and dubstep beats expertly to create a macabre love song on “Claws,” and “Chase,” buffeted by a fluttering Nico Muhly-esque intro, is sublime. Along the way, Lott is joined by such guests as The Antlers’ Peter Silberman and My Brightest Diamond’s Shara Worden, who provide backup for Lott’s vocal experiments.

Lyrically, this album is more cryptic than its predecessor. A sample: “Leave the riches, take the bones/I’m ready to be robbed,” which Lott intones like a spooky take on the classic line from The Godfather. All in all, Rising emerges as more of an ethereal sonic landscape than an organized LP, but when it’s a landscape as luminous as this one, you’re too busy being enjoyably creeped out to care. (

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 9/10


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June 10th 2011

It’s so amazing. I get goosebumps everytime I listen to it. Ryan Lott is probably one of the most talented men on our earth.