Drew Lustman is a producer from New York, also known as FaltyDL. This new album, under a new moniker, somewhat differs from his usual work. In some way you can say this album is a bit lighter, more relax. There are influences from drum & bass, hip-hop, garage house and nineties techno but the whole breathes a lounge-like atmosphere, warm and easeful. Often I'm reminded of acts like Funki Porchini or Amon Tobin. The music has similar qualities than those acts, mainly being both danceable and placid.
Crystal Cowboy opens with a highly energetic drum & bass track, named 'Watch A Man Die'. The beats and percussion remind me of early Prodigy but less heavy and less obtrusive. 'Time Machine' gets a bit heavier as it follows a similar structure and drums. On 'Wolves' we hear analog beats and trance elements combine into a raw version of Kiasmos. 'Onyx', featuring Le1f on vocals, is a solid hip hop song like The Herbaliser makes them. 'The Hatchet', one of my favourite tracks, drives on an almost industrial beat.
To some extent, it's as if Lustman wanted to make an overview of electronic dance music throughout the past few decennia. 'Angel Flesh' is a lounge/trip hop song with dreamy female vocals and a downtempo beat. The previously mentioned 'Time Machine' uses typical nineties sounds and 'Green Technique' is a weird breakbeat tune with a sense of experimentation. So is 'Blueberry Fields', which nudges towards old school hip hop.
All these influences make The Crystal Cowboy extremely varied, although the songs clearly have a distinct, inborn sound. This music is perfectly suited for the dancefloor and for the living room, or better yet, for the sunlit garden on a warm spring day. The quality of the music is quite what you can expect from a label like Planet Mu or Ninja Tunes and fits perfectly among the well-known acts in these stables. So yes, this is just a very good EDM album and an excellent addition to any collection.