Black Asteroid Credit: Matthew Reeves

Minneapolis native Bryan Black was fronting an industrial band called Haloblack when Prince invited him to work as an engineer at Paisley Park, a position he held for only six months. Later, he told the bloggers at his label, Electric Deluxe, that the work was “tedious and painful,” but he gained knowledge he wound up applying to his own music, first as part of a “techno punk” duo called Motor, and currently as a solo techno artist under the name Black Asteroid. His recent debut full-length, Thrust (Last Gang Records), fits comfortably within the industrial thrum that’s old hat to Black, though these songs add a polished sheen to the grimy metallic rust. Black builds his music to keep people on the dance floor while he finds the most alluring groove in each song and slowly pulls them out as if he’s stretching taffy. He displays a pop songwriter’s affection for concision, usually cutting songs off at around three or four minutes instead of letting them run on. His arsenal of contributing vocalists (which includes Cold Cave’s Wesley Eisold and Zola Jesus) double down on the album’s accessibility; Black may revel in darkness and harsh noise, but he also knows how to use them as hooks for people who like their music clean and bright.   v