Not beardo rock / Olsen Records
  • Not beardo rock / Olsen Records
After working on remixes and edits for the likes of Stevie Wonder, Chic, Hot Chip, and Franz Ferdinand, Norwegian producer Todd Terje releases his first full-length, and it's a lot of fun (I could be wrong, but it sounds like he mixed Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" into the Wonder edit, which makes it hit harder).

It's Album Time roams all over the instrumental map, cherry-picking tropes from disco, house, '60s lounge, '80s synth pop, and other styles. Granted, the first two songs I heard, "Delorean Dynamite" and the slow-burn Robert Palmer cover "Johnny and Mary," didn't completely convince me, but then I listened to the entire record, and I became a believer. I just might have chosen different tracks as singles (the whizbang "Inspector Norse," which has nothing to do with John Thaw's Inspector Morse, made its debut via EP in 2012).

Most modern producers, like this one, tend to gum up the works with a grab bag of guest vocalists, so it's notable that Terje only invited one, but if you're going to take that route, you might as well opt for the eternally suave Bryan Ferry, who plays McCaw Hall tonight. The inclusion isn't as strange as it may seem, since Terje has remixed several Ferry and Roxy Music numbers, including "Alphaville," "Don't Stop the Dance," and "Love Is the Drug," which I wrote about here.

In the grand scheme of It's Album Time, which is as lively as its cover art, "Johnny and Mary" makes for an odd fit, but that's one of the best things about it. The rest of the record is so relentless that it's nice to have a break in the action; a chance to relax, unwind, and catch your breath before re-strapping on your dancing shoes. I have no idea whether Ferry will be performing the song tonight, and I can't afford to go anyway, but if he does, be sure to let me know.

Terje's label, Olsen Records, releases It's Album Time on Apr 8. Stream it at NPR.