It’s a rare feat when a record can both psych you up and mellow you out, but such is the case with Tycho’s Dive. Since its release last fall, the album has been my go-to cooking soundtrack, my most reliable jogging mix, and my quintessential mid-afternoon pick-me-up. Sonically speaking, Tycho mastermind Scott Hansen smartly blends epic sweeps of minimalism with bold strokes of electronic drum and bass, making for a sound that’s part dubstep, part tribally inspired massage music. Take for example “A Walk,” which works off a catchy hook but builds through movements much like a classical composition. Elsewhere, songs like “Hours” and “Coastal Break” transcend their instrumental trappings with pulsing drums and guitar chords that seem to fill the void normally occupied by lyrics. Midway through, title track “Dive” features some far-off vocals (courtesy of Jianda Johnson) that Hansen seamlessly blends into the mix. The result is a record’s worth of sonic snapshots that, like their cover art, seem to exist in a pastel world that’s simultaneously light and dark, fast and slow, vibrant and soothing.

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