Adventure Weird Work
For Adventure’s 2011 album, Lesser Known, mastermind Benny Boeldt dived deep into pop songcraft. Unlike Adventure’s self-titled debut, this record was full of earworm vocal hooks—a big leap from the chiptune-indebted songs of his first album. Boeldt’s third Adventure LP, Weird Work, remains in the same sonic space as Lesser Known but abandons its sing-alongs. The album veers from a Square Enix-style video game soundtrack (“Alone”) to a strange lecture leaking from a high school’s ceiling PA (“Constantly”). The frenzied “Laser Blast” and the smooth “Nervous” encourage dance floor crowding. Weird Work is the result of Adventure’s 8-bit tendencies running free in an IDM landscape built on Aphex Twin and early Warp Records.
Stepping back from the strictures of pop music, Boeldt was once again free, with only an allegiance to his creative muses. “This record is about taking away any restrictive guidelines to the way I play or compose,” Boeldt says. “It’s about isolation, confusion, doubt, growing up, growing out, losing control.” Despite the lack of deliberate confines on the music, there is still a feeling of control to these tracks. The music came into existence freely, but has found order.
In today’s digital age, when so many try to find definition with online tools and seek identity in downloadable content, it’s nice to know that Adventure has it figured out with Weird Work. “This record is about recognizing myself again,” Boeldt says. “This record is about realizing who I am as a musician, and what I sound like. For better or for worse.”
Since moving to Baltimore in 2007 with the encouragement of his friends Dan Deacon, OCDJ, and Videohippos, Benny Boeldt has made three full-length albums as Adventure and toured extensively with his own music and as a member of the Dan Deacon Ensemble. A U.S. tour with labelmate Toro Y Moi in the spring of 2011 was a fitting way to celebrate that season’s release of Lesser Known, Adventure’s second album for Carpark and its first album of pop songs. Adventure’s third LP is Weird Work, to be released in April 2013.
Weird Work is an extension of the world Boeldt created with Lesser Known, but without that record’s use of electronic pop elements such as vocal melodies and lyrics. It’s a new album of Adventure’s signature 8-bit-infused IDM. According to Boeldt, making Weird Work was about finding himself in his music again, and celebrating the act of creation. The album “is about being awkward, and anxious,” Boeldt says. “Ugly yet beautiful. Most of all, this record is about working hard, and cherishing any and all time left aside for creative endeavor.”
Boeldt grew up in Durham, North Carolina and attended East Carolina University in Greenville, NC. The school’s slogan, “Tomorrow starts here,” is an apt descriptor for Adventure’s music, which sounds both futuristic and of-the-moment. At ECU, he studied painting and drawing alongside friends and fellow future Baltimore residents Future Islands. It was here that Boeldt first developed an interest in writing and composing electronic music.
1. Days Off
2. Laser Blast
5. Reality Shift
8. Catching Up