Hear ye, hear ye… Kai Whiston is vying for best album of the year. No World As Good As Mine kinda comes out of nowhere, but it’s already one of the strongest contenders for the end year; it’s been a great year for electronic music and this record is just a further confirmation of that.
Kai is only 20 years old, and with this release he shows a yet undisclosced side of himself. If Kai Whiston Bitch and XYZ proved that he’s more than excellent at producing hard and groovy, bangers, No World As Good As Mine seems to take a more meditative/slow-paced approach: shimmering beautiful guitars, synths and strings blossom an experimental/noise rock and avant-garde electronic fusion.
This album is extremely various, moving with confidence from raw, unabridged club bangers, like “Run It”, to beautiful post-rock epics, like the wonderful “Things You Bury” (feat. The Physics House Band), again to poppy and sunshiney tracks such as “Beautiful Losers”. Every track has a holometabolous life cycle in which the sound smoothly evolves in different stages. “Run It” stands a perfect example: it starts as another deconstructed club banger similar to what you would find in Kai’s debut, but then it just morphs into a grand, beautiful and organic sounding song, with live drums, and relaxing nature sounds.
These eleven tracks have also another value. They entertain. Neither in a club music sense nor as a too conceptual album sense though. Tracks like “Lovers”, “Don’t Need It” and the second half of “Beautiful Losers” build up an incredibly dense atmosphere perfect to get lost in. The exploration of the world that he has created and transposed into music feels similar to wandering around Hideo Kojima’s virtual re-build of America in Death Stranding.
No World As Good As Mine transcends genres, one minute it’s a trap song and before you know the song develops into a GYBE! style orchestra music act. This album is a precious jewel, and a newfound landmark for electronic music.