Album Review: Laszlo / ‘Level Five Stage One’ (Lydian)

laszlo level five stage one


A mini-album that’s a pick up and play killing of time over a gaming session that involves unhooking the phone and sending the kids to the neighbours, Laszlo leaves fingers clawed and eyes squared on a glitch quest targeting adversaries with boom and doom.

As “Dawn of Locrian” advises you to tread very carefully for the reward of new wave majesty and modem-chewing boom-bap, high and low ends make you jump in a digital cross between hopscotch and limbo. Vibrant synth projections team with rusted nuts and bolts, so “Dragon Quest” unfolds majestically before turning on its screwface, where Laszlo’s fantasy regularly encounters a reconstructed reality telling you not to go counting your chickens. “Final Fantasy” floats with a freedom still struggling to shake off unseen forces, in a cool encapsulation of maximalist contours.

The dungeon mastery isn’t a complete whore for edging around corridors. With “Legend of Lumbar” coveting a robot’s helmet, a burst of funk on “Crazy Cuckoo”, an incongruously bouncy platformer having Laszlo crack a window, goes with “Bass Patch Hunter IV” as niggling in their wiggly, froggy wiles, finding clearer passages through synth shines that take the pressure off the virtual shooter.

Even within eight tracks there’s an intermission/digital drinks break, while “Carousels” is a little under-developed as a promising dream sequence. Definitely room for an expansion pack then, Laszlo registering a reasonable score on the CPU disco high score table.

File under: Slugabed, Fulgeance, Eyes of March