Pitchfork (Website) - "Their songwriting remains a strong point, and Classixx continue to show a knack for choosing kindred-spirit collaborators."
Clash (magazine) - "Owning synths that are zingier than most, carrying the hopes of the young, free and immaculate of barnet, Classixx stand tall in the field of retro-sounding fun, but take into consideration the style/substance debate by avoiding the excesses of the superficial."
Personnel: Michael Di Francesco, Michael Angelakos, Alex Frankel, The West Los Angeles Children's Choir, Matthew Field, Alberto Lopez, Filip Nikolic , Rai Thistlethwayte, Jamie Muhoberac, Tom Krell, Nonku Phiri, Jarrah McCleary, George Krikes, Sean Guerin, Diego Calvo, Aaron Venezuela, T-Pain (vocals).
Audio Mixer: Eric Broucek.
Photographer: Nick Walker .
Classixx's first release, 2013's Hanging Gardens, was a bright, sunny dance album with lots of guest shots and hooky tunes with the kind of overall appeal that made them seem like one of the more likely candidates to challenge Daft Punk's techno-disco throne. By the time Faraway Reach came out in 2016, the duo of Michael David and Tyler Blake had extended their reach, both in terms of guests and styles. While mainly based around the kind of bubbly dance-pop that made their first album so good, it also takes on '90s hip-house, slow and smooth R&B, and modern pop to boot. The duo show mastery of all the various styles, ladling sticky sweet melodies on top of sturdy, sometimes borderline transcendent beats. The tracks that really land hardest are the uptempo dancefloor fillers. The glitchy disco of "Grecian Summer" kicks the album off like a ray of sunshine coming through the bedroom window first thing in the morning, "Safe Inside" bubbles like fizzy soda pop, and "Just Let Go" is a slick bit of modern dance pop that shows just how good the duo are at mixing sounds and songs. The guests are all impressive, with T-Pain bringing some calm melancholy to the relaxed summer empowerment jam "Whatever I Want," Isles adding some silky sadness to the late-night ballad "The Dissolve," and the rest (De Lux, Passion Pit, How to Dress Well, etc) bringing some nice vocal touches to add to the mix. It all adds up to another fun and frothy dance album, maybe a notch less exciting that Hanging Gardens if only because there aren't as many knockout blows like "I'll Get You," but still close to being exactly one could hope for in a full-length dance album. It never gets boring, it moves quickly, and it often hits lofty heights where the melodies, music, voices, and beats all combine as one to do what the best dance music does: Transport the listener to a sweaty, uplifted dancefloor packed with like-minded revelers. ~ Tim Sendra