Casper McFadden in an Avril Lavigne against a wall covered in anime posters
Credit: James Baroz

Casper McFadden’s breakcore tracks hum with hyperactive energy—the Chicago producer sounds like he can’t sit still, and he releases music often enough to prop up that impression. Two months after Vancouver label Kitty on Fire released his Stasis (Log) in January 2021, Casper dropped the full-length Original Soundtrack and an EP called PPP Parasites Eve, the latter of which underground NYC dance label Death by Sheep issued on cassette. He followed those up with a trio of releases this winter: December’s Medicalmechanica, another album on Kitty on Fire; January’s 2021 Demos/Unfinished, a compilation of previously unreleased material; and February’s Abyss Chasers: Hollow Memory, a full-length collaboration with Saint Louis producer Manapool. On Medicalmechanica, Casper’s distinctive percussive loops draw from the breadth of dance-music history, and his drums careen through the tracks in a jittery frenzy that’ll make you itch or push you onto your feet to start sweating. He never loses control of his songs, even as he prods and agitates them till they sound like they’ll explode, and he provides relief from that tension with his ear for melody. “Beginners Break,” for example, rides a relaxed chiptune-like synth lead, but Casper blends it into the tempest of the album—he includes enough samples and breaks to guide you back to his regularly scheduled rager already in progress.

Vegyn, Casper McFadden, DJ Taye, Fri 3/11, 9 PM, Sleeping Village, 3734 W. Belmont, $40, $35 in advance, 21+