This past January in the Pacific Northwest was an especially dark and dreary one. It was Portland's wettest month on record in nearly three years, and every day seemed to bring another drizzle-to-downpour. That is why Andras' Joyful is a very welcome "album of the week" - it simply radiates positive light. Over seven tracks, this Melbourne-based DJ pumps major chord progressions over club beats, while occasionally sliding in warped vocal samples. To stick with the seasonal metaphor, it feels like spring peeking out after a long winter. A supercut of flowers blooming in fast motion could be cast over top of album highlight River Red and feel totally appropriate! Other corners of the album also capture this same positive feel. The opening and closing moments of Saga of Sweetheart recall Person Pitch-era Panda Bear, an all-time classic and similarly warm composition. And like Dominik Eulberg's excellent Mannigfaltig released last year, part of the proceeds from Joyful album sales will benefit an environmental cause - this time the Invasive Species Council's "Come! Mend!" Initiative. So if winter has you feeling down, try Joyful - it might be just what you need.
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