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McFerrdog: Lawd Forgive Me (1080p)

With the opening phrases of “Bless This Mess,” Max McFerren whets his listeners’ palates with a gorgeously canned MIDI music sounding motif, unfolding patiently as a heroic opening theme despite its self-deprecating title. But from there things are more varied and fun, starting with the bounce of “What Justifiable Confidence!” and the weird house bob of “Peak of My Curiosity.” The jaunty cadence of the latter is a real highlight, showing off McFerrdog’s dancefloor chops with style. With “Lifeswork” and “Acid,” the album takes a slight leftfield turn, with an emphasis on more broken up beats and off-kilter grooves.

The balance between more fun jams and weirder sounds is a good one, keeping things interesting across its twelve varied tracks. A weird syncopated workout like “Make Our Own Prisons” has more in common with the Hessle or Hemlock crew than some of the synthier cuts, but it’s worth that sharp contrast up against a cut like “Bio Pic of Atrus Groovmacher,” a full-bodied dancefloor gem. The title cut that closes out the album is straight-up 90s piano house throwback, ending on a joyous note. It’s an odd album, feeling simultaneously small and intimate but restless and exuberant. Fans of the ever-splintering landscape of house and dance music hybrids will likely find more than one thing to love here, well worth a listen.

Buy it: Bandcamp | Boomkat | iTunes | Amazon