Fred again.. - ‘Actual Life 3 (January 1 - September 9 2022)’

With his third outing, he places that vulnerability firmly back on the dancefloor.

Fred again.. - ‘Actual Life 3 (January 1 - September 9 2022)’

The world has opened up since Fred Gibson dropped the first in his ‘Actual Life’ series; this third instalment follows a string of acclaimed global festival sets and an unmissable Boiler Room appearance that has fully cemented the producer’s superstar status. Documenting just over the first eight months of 2022, Fred again..’s ‘Actual Life 3’ moves beyond the confined intimacy of his COVID-diarised debut and the tentative euphoria of its follow up, effortlessly jumping between the freedom of his newfound status and the heartfelt vulnerability that underpinned what came before.

There’s nothing particularly new here from Fred bar minor switches into previously unexplored electronic styles, but it still boasts some of his best tracks yet - all earmarked as early singles. ‘Danielle (smile on my face)’ and ‘Bleu (better with time)’ elevate the emo-rave that so perfectly captures the conflicting emotions of the past two years, while ‘Kammy (like i do)’ is destined to soundtrack that 2am feeling for years to come. The stripped back moments are rarer, reserved largely for a throwback interlude sampling his own work. It makes sense, with Fred no longer confined to a home studio and unleashing his sound out in the wild.

It’s this that ‘Actual Life 3’ is made for, a simultaneous celebration of nightlife and an acceptance of ongoing fragility. Few producers have poured this much emotion into their work, and those that have either step away from the club or remain under the radar. Yet with his rise in popularity, it’s obvious that Fred Again.. has accurately captured the zeitgeist, speaking to the vulnerability of a shifting club scene. And with his third outing, he places that vulnerability firmly back on the dancefloor.

Tags: Fred again.., Reviews, Album Reviews

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