The Hamburg duo of Björn Mühlnickel and Björn Honert have been operating under the banner of Creating.Paradise for more than three decades, crafting a distinctly melodic style of electro that possesses shades of various subgenres. With So True being the pair’s latest EP, the band stays within its lane on the highway of the scene. Mühlnickel’s production is meticulous and finely tuned to bridge the grittiness of the mid-to-late ‘80s with the more streamlined polish of the ‘90s, beats neatly programmed and samples both rhythmic and ornamental, along with atmospheric pad sequences that evoke the haunted gated sensibilities of cEvin Key. All the while, Honert’s husky and sophisticated vocals carry saccharine melodies that never delve into the overt histrionics or dramatic inflections that can sometimes adorn synthpop, which serves to accentuate the dour and somewhat doom-laden lyrics. At times, he bears a resemblance to Paul Barker in Lead into Gold, particularly on a track like “Someday,” whose bubbling synth leads and caustic beats underscore words about futility and gaining perspective in one’s life. Every song is a finely crafted and coldly electronic gem, from the sneering techno synths of “Disillusion” to the throbbing bass and metallic rhythms of “So True,” the latter presented in two distinct mixes that rightfully emphasize disparate elements to a solid tune. “The Collapse” is especially notable for the entrancing pads, punchy bass, and metallic percussion, Honert adding a bit of his own accompaniment to the instrumental as his words resound with a dystopian foreboding; keen rivetheads will also delight in the use of radio broadcast samples from In the Mouth of Madness. It’s a rather beautifully orchestrated track that is sadly short on runtime, but hopefully a future remix will resolve that. In the same vein is “World Wide Error,” the vocoder repetitions of the title making for a nice touch that strengthens lines like “Are we lost by mistake,” while the sparse beat, guttural bass, and sparkling atmospheres add to a rather catchy song. If there is anything negative to say about the So True EP, it is simply in its subtlety… not that Creating.Paradise have any need to be ostentatious or break from their own mold, and the songcraft is excellent. One would think that over three decades, the band would’ve tried to call greater attention to itself, but maybe that’s been part of their longevity – no frills, no bombast, just good. Why not?