Today, some listeners are voicing concerns that dubstep is a dying genre—a fad that existed solely as an exciting, contrarian alternative to the growing popularity of catchy electronic pop. Likewise, they argue that with new mainstream acceptance, the genre is floundering—the limelight brings the destruction of a genre that can only succeed as a counter-cultural movement. Listening to new albums like Flux Pavilion’s Blow the Roof lends begrudging merit to these words.
The album is average; of the eight tracks, six deliver the anticipated blend of pulsing bass and electronic melodies which “make your body wanna bounce,” as the first track invites. A producer like Flux Pavilion, however, coming off of celebrated singles such as “Bass Cannon” and “I Can’t Stop” as well as collaboration work with the likes of Major Lazer and Jay-Z, should not remain content with generic, and ultimately, forgettable beats. “Double Edge” and “Do or Die” feature rappers who only serve to irritate the listener and distract from the main event: the beat. The lyrics on other tracks, especially “The Scientist,” are wholly nonsensical and only contribute the bare minimum of another sound layer. The most disappointing track, “I Still Can’t Stop” sounds like a lazy attempt at remixing Flux Pavilion’s own “I Can’t Stop.” With the same sample and structure, it adds nothing to the original, but serves as an attempt to stir up more appreciation for an old hit.
The album is like Boreale beer: it accomplishes its intended intoxicating goal, and most people wouldn’t deny a bottle if offered—but few actively seek it out. This is in no way a bad record (your reviewer caught himself humming “Starlight” today); it’s simply music that any dubstep fan will have already bounced to.