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Europe By Night marks the official public unveiling of Swedish haze aesthete Henrik Stelzer’s newest hypnosis endeavor: Metro Riders. Unlike the new age malaise and ambient voids of his previous project, Fluorescent Heights, here Stelzer pursues more nocturnal, mantric designs, fogged rhythms and bleached neon synths pulsing blankly across stark cityscapes. The titles imply urban decay, empty horizons, rising dystopia: “Tension On The Train,” “Rats,” “Trauma,” “Endgame,” “Stockholm 2024.” A mood of futurist lament reigns, muted metronomes threading a path under smeared streetlights, concrete towers, and starless skies – an illusion of movement simultaneously despondent and transcendent.
The melodic gauze and faded fidelity of Stelzer’s eight songs give them a ghostly, interstitial quality, somewhere between elegy and prophecy. This is a music of restlessness and reverie, of motion masquerading as meaning, lost in the lonely infinities of life before dawn.