July 25th, 2017 | Album reviews

Bene’s World
Leaving Records

Benedek built his name on boogie, expertly recreating the kind of smooth, synthed-out sound that you can hear thumping through Funkmosphere. But the producer and multi-instrumentalist has always been a bit more experimental, bringing boogie to the likes of house, hip-hop, and jazz fusion. “On My Way” opens Bene’s World with buoyant, tropical house, a song that sounds something like staring through crystal clear water at sunset. Benedek channels a lot of synth history on this record—you can hear traces of forgotten vibers like Leon Lowman right alongside those more baroque boogie compositions. Single “Castle 2 Castle” hits with trunk-rattling bass, a driving, focused song that could’ve been a killer club tune in the 90s—and perhaps still can be one now, too. “Ocean Park” winds up into a surprise synth sax solo only to dissolve back into the smooth dance beat. “Afterglo” steers toward that neon sound that seems only to come from an entire night spent hitting the streets. Unlike his debut work (which featured occasional guests like Dâm-Funk and Groundislava), Bene’s World is by comparison a solitary affair. But his is a clear vision. This is Bene’s World, after all, so just sink into the slow-motion dream that is closer “Sonatime.”

—Miles Clements