Bending elements of jazz, trip-hop, post-punk and electronic music, the four (plus one hidden) songs that make up the EP buzz with the qualities of crisp and futuristic film noir. Joined by vocalist Tunde Adebimpe and a host of others, TVotR's sound is not committed to parading its musical influences but borrows subtle bits and pieces from them to create an atmosphere that is both murky and methodical. A static-like hum crowds around the rhythm section throughout the entire recording, which consistently keeps each song parallel to the next.
Resounding vocals that float like a computer-generated barber shop quartet rise from the mix and stand tall as a defining element. From the opening rattle of "Satellite" to the unmarked a cappella rendition of the Pixies' song, "Mr. Grieves," the vocal delivery sounds as though it could have been copied from one song and pasted over the next.
There's not a lot of range at work on Young Liars and the brevity of it all leaves plenty of room to roam before the full-length arrives.
TV On The Radio play Lenny's Thurs., Nov. 27. 9 p.m. $5.