Kaytranada is a Canadian producer who incorporates a high level of musicality into his sample based music. On his new album, 99.9%, Kaytranada combines moody keyboard sounds with fun vocal features and dance-able beats resulting in a sleek, modern take on the sounds of dance music’s past.
By finding subtlety in his song development and diversity in his beat selections, Kaytranada avoids the typical problems associated with dance music. On “Bus Ride,” the moody sounds are made more texturally satisfying with biting drum sounds. “One Too Many” reaches into the territory of disco to accompany a rousing verse from Phonte. Even at it’s most dance-oriented, 99.9%, remains subdued in it’s overall aesthetic, never striving for the slick pop sounds.
The album did feel a bit long upon first listen; the second half slowly becomes a bit monotonous with the songs sounding more and more similar until the end. In particular “Bullets” and “Leave Me Alone”seem hard to differentiate. Both incorporate bland vocal features and quick-moving beats that fail to spark the level of interest abundant in the first few songs of the album.
Overall 99.9% was good, but it could have used a bit of a reduction and I am not fully confident in its ability to maintain intrigue in some of my deeper listens.