Considering how LudiSTELO teased Experience with three singles, the full album release of Flashpoint was welcome. Having seen the band live once, the album recordings to live performance are slightly different. While the recorded songs have polish, watching the band live has a lot more energy.
While Experience was the introduction, Flashpoint feels and sounds bigger. “Greeting of the Universe” sets the tone as an introduction to both the album and the expanded sound. “A Calling Sign” is the true start, using slower tempos and arcing melodies and then adding the drums in the last third of the song. One of the small issues I had with Experience was that the drums seem to repeat the same rhythm over and over. On Flashpoint, the drums have a lot more presence. They provide more structure than just keeping tempo. That’s shown on “Space 5432.”
“Blossom” is one of the singles and really has a different feeling to any song on the first release. There’s a lot more variety between verses and the arrangement of all the instruments lets every member have a voice. The continuous guitar rhythm that sits along with the drums keeps the song grounded until the chorus when it feels like lift off. Many of the songs have this attribute. They feel less constrained and are allowed to explore through different melodies. “2nd Wind” is my favorite song from Flashpoint. It combines what I enjoyed from Experience and adds the themes of Flashpoint to it. It’s both organic and synthetic.
“Aftermath” featuring HEO‘s Boyoung Kim was an unexpected song. But hearing female vocals over Ludistelo’s instrumentals is perfection. Her voice fits the melody by sliding in and out, creating these small moments against Sangjin‘s vocals. The slow tempo fits as an outro to the album.
I really enjoy listening to LudiSTELO. Their electronic rock style is definitely evolving. Experience is a solid album, but compared to Flashpoint, could be considered safe. If the band continues to explore and evolve, who knows what could come from a third album.