Everything – and I do mean everything – about Topdown Dialectic reads as particularly heady. So it often goes with electronic music. Ever since the days of Brian Eno, concepts and inspirations for arguably the most nebulous and definition-defying arena of music have revelled in the distinctly intellectual. Even the staunchest fans of the genre (save perhaps the most overly prideful of us) are often left somewhat scratching their heads as to what a statement regarding their most recent favorite actually means. But, hey, we know it sure sounds good.

What manages to justify these lofty origins, as ever, remains the power of the best electronic music to transcend any perceived grandeur. Take Eno: for all his Oblique Strategies and Fourth World concepts, the man remains ultimately approachable: not only self-deprecating in conversation, his music itself simply reaches you.

Topdown Dialectic take these principles to arguably even greater heights on Vol. 2. However, they remain completely anonymous; as of this second collection of material given wide release by Peak Oil, we're still uncertain as to their identity, their sex, and even their number. Is it one person? A duo? More still? Your guess is as good as their own publicist's.

Dialectic's method is no less inscrutable. A press release says it better than this writer could possibly hope to: “The recordings are captures and edits of various nonlinear sound-systems, shifting conditions, and reactions to internal changes.” Of course! Why didn't you just say so?

Do I entirely understand what this means? No, no I do not. Does this make me a plebeian? Quite possibly. Does it matter? Not when the music itself is so defiantly accessible. In spite of the grand design at work here, only one thing stands tall: the music is empathetic, emotional, and above all intimate.

Vol. 2 is also quite unlike anything else you've heard in 2019. Often sounding akin to what one might imagine playing in the background of some stranded, distant spaceport in a neglected asteroid belt, granting a backdrop to the traders and captains bold enough to find themselves there while a bartender grumbles about having to serve robots; it's decidedly fit for the future.

Somehow, it's equally fit for the moment. Plenty of electronic music fails to justify its bizarre out-rigging, but the best of it, I'll say again, entirely transcends any pretension. Topdown Dialectic's Vol. 2 immediately allows the listener to immerse themselves in its bizarre, murky world, until they entirely lose themselves in the monochromatic future at hand. Bored? Let this one transport you to...hell, I don't know where. It's surely better than here.