Retro, hip, and experimental, Chaz Bear’s newest album Outer Peace portrays it all with panache–one that projects a very clear representation of his ever-changing style.
Under the Toro y Moi moniker, Bear has already pioneered the chillwave genre with his previous works, but his newest album proves why he’s one of the greats. Ranging from soothing, mellow reverberations (“Laws of the Universe”, “50-50”) to electronic tracks reminiscent of Daft Punk, the songs that make up Outer Peace gives you the whole “dance-while-you-work” experience–especially for those “Freelance”-ers out there. The album is perfect to listen to while hustling and doing a little shoulder shimmying on the side.
“Freelance”, the lead single off of Outer Peace, is especially filled with the Daft Punk style, featuring Bear’s own vocals treated with autotune and modern tech culture references. Bear himself even pointed out Daft Punk as a major inspiration to him when producing the album. However, he still largely describes his music as pop. Groovy pop, but pop nonetheless.
As the mood shifts throughout the album, you get quite a different experience from one song to the next. “Ordinary Pleasure”, for example, begins with some interesting percussions paired with some contemporary electronic soundscapes. “Miss Me”—featuring ABRA—exudes some major R&B vibes with a number of exotic accents that contrasts the rest of the album. Later on, we wander through lo-fi sounds, some funk and groove, and even dip into electronic dance music.
In a way, Outer Peace is a serious “level up” for Bear. As he puts it himself on “Ordinary Pleasure”–“maximize all the pleasure!”