Steve Aoki’s Neon Future I Album Review

By Patrick Doss

The first track on the album, “Transcendence,” isn’t so much a song, as it is a pace setter for the rest of the album. The voice of futurist Ray Kurzweil certainly provides the album with an remarkable introduction and overall feel. The journey of Neon Future I has officially begun. After the amazing intro, Aoki truly delivers with the first song of the album, “Neon Future.” This collaboration with Luke Steele of The Sleepy Jackson and Empire of the Sun, is truly an amazing track. It definitely has the great dance feel of some of Aoki’s earlier tracks. Certainly the most pleasant surprise of the album is this fantastic collaboration with Fall Out Boy, “Back To Earth.” The vocals of lead man Patrick Stump compliment the strong electro house beat of Aoki perfectly. Definitely a combination that should occur in the future!

     Although it seems rather easy to pass off as the former Black Eyed Peas vocalist who hasn’t put out the greatest tracks in recent years, he may have struck gold here. With a voice that truly belongs in the dance music genre, “Born to Get Wild” is a fairly good example of what he could produce if he were to look through his possible songs with more of a fine comb. Being the first song to be released as a single from this album, it is quite clear why Steve Aoki chose this specific collaboration with rapper Waka Flocka Flame. “Rage the Night Away” is designed to be played at max volume with the bass turned all the way up. Spectacular collaboration to say the least.
     Simply sampling the vocals of Kid Ink from his previous release “Boneless” proved to be a masterful move by Mr. Aoki. Being the second song to be released as a single, “Delirious (Boneless)” certainly ensures that Neon Future I keeps giving off exciting vibes. As the third single from the album, “Free the Madness” with Machine Gun Kelly is another gem. The rapping by MGK surprisingly compliments the beats by Aoki in a major way. This is a perfect workout track. Really the only forgettable song on the album is “Afroki” with Dutch producer Afrojack. The vocals by Bonnie McKee aren’t bad, but this song just seems like a generic dance track that isn’t memorable in the slightest. Unlike their previous collaboration “Steve French”, “Get Me Outta Here” is much more dubstep oriented. It appears as though Flux Pavilion may have had more influence over the song, but that certainly isn’t a bad thing. If there had to be one final song on this album, this is certainly not a bad choice.
     The outro of the album, “Beyond Boundaries,” features the same futuristic sounds of the introduction, but this time it is gerontologist Aubrey de Grey who gets the nod. His views certainly permit the album to end on a mysterious note, leaving listeners ready for Neon Future II, which is set to be released in 2015!
Neon Future I is definitely worth a listen, and Steve Aoki delivers just like he did with Wonderland.
Positives : Majority of tracks are amazing, Aoki’s versatility as a producer is shown.
Negatives : Rather short, “Afroki”