This August saw the arrival of its follow up, Social Outcast. On the evidence of opener “NEXT,” it’s clear that my description of Radical Invasion also applies here. This track doesn’t fuck around. We’re dropped (perhaps blasted) straight in with a hard, fast and deep beat. Over it we have incendiary, tachycardia-inducing synth runs.
Be advised: this is the hard stuff. There’s an urgency to this, which is heightened by collaborator Ikeba Yuu‘s vocals. “NEXT” also demonstrates the album’s trance credentials. The repeating melodic phrases, peaks and drops are all present, correct and executed magnificently.
I feel much the same way about Social Outcast as I do about LILLITH twin’s Of Flame & Love. The overall experience is more important than each track in isolation. “NEXT” sets the example that the rest of the album will be measured against. But that’s not to say there’s no variety here.
“Don’t Stop Love” has a very triumphant flavour to it. The intro provokes images of fists in the air and heads held high.
“LIGHTNING of JUSTICE” has a softer piano line, which leads into a harpsichord, backed up by striking bells. The storm surges again of course, but the chip tune dashes nod towards LV.4s’s more playful side.
“Perseids” is arguably Social Outcast’s most accessible track. For context, the Perseids are a prolific meteor shower associated with the Swift-Tuttle comet. They appear to hail from the constellation Perseus, hence the name.
Thematically, this title works so well. This song could soundtrack a ride across the stars. The youthful spin on the vocals invoke childlike wonder. It’s still simply awesome pounding techno, but a sense of magic and beauty is bound to the intensity and undeniable physics of the production.
I know I can be hyperbolic, but honestly this is one of the best songs I’ve ever heard. Or one of the most glorious at the very least.
As much as I love Social Outcast, I must add caveats. If you’re not looking to spontaneously combust on a dance floor (or you’re not a character in a battle anime), I’d advise listening to this while travelling. An early morning slog to work is really buoyed up by something like this, because the effect is heightened by physical motion.
Regardless, Social Outcast is still quite the ride, even if you leave it running in the background. But it really deserves (and rewards) your complete attention.
You can find LV.4 here: