Its title apparently refers to what Byallo calls "different stages I've passed through as a person, people I've known, places I've been, tastes I've had and changed..." This translates to the kind of deep, techy, tribal sound that has been around for a while on the West Coast. There are traces of the sounds of imprints like Siesta and Jump that made the area such a hotbed in the early 21st century and, even though they were from southern California—San Diego and San Jose respectively—they are still closer in spirit to what Byallo is doing here rather than labels like Panhandle, who tried to transplant Chicago to San Francisco.
Even though it's a very assured release, it's difficult to pick out a highlight—every track has groove in spades and will undoubtedly prove to be distinctly useful. Tracks like "Bebring" race along like Tron. "Ring in the Dead" has Byallo solemnly intoning some sort of mission statement but, like the rest of the album, it doesn't sound self-indulgent in the least. The heavy kick of "War Zero" is one of the most aggressive motifs here, but balance is provided by ethereal synth washes and a flat but potent stab. "Borderline" races headlong into the mist and gloom and has a melancholic air, while the wonderfully titled "Casual Sax" keeps the sax to a dubbed-out minimum, thus avoiding any Kenny G comparisons. "The Hello Track" stays the right side of cheese as well with a driving backing track that serves as a platform for a simple and predictable incantation.
Brick by Brick is clearly an album, not a collection of hit singles. Even so, I can see most of these tracks standing out on the dance floor as "Alland Byallo productions" due to their energy and detail. Years of being at the helm of [KONTROL] have clearly given Byallo a valuable insight into how to work the crowd. It's not always easy to transfer that knowledge to the finished product, but Brick by Brick has made it sound effortless.