[image-1] They sure do know how to make a first impression. Retired Astronauts, a new experimental pop and hip-hop duo, didn’t just adopt personas of ex-fighter pilots and members of NASA and call it a day. Instead, they made a surprisingly unique self-titled debut album, mutated several genres into one, and masqueraded as ex-fighter pilots.

The band describes their sound the best on “Nassau,” a power-pop and rap track sewed down the middle like Frankenstein’s monster. “This is rocket fused with hip-hop/ get used to it/ it’s so fly we should be drafted by the air force/ our presence is stronger than Sampson on steroids.”

Yeah — that’s the kind of alt-rap weirdness the world needs more of. Thankfully, their self-titled album is full of it. Songs like “Excusez Moi” and “Let’s Just See What Happens” is filled to the brim with a shifting flow and brilliantly strange metaphors you would expect from an early 2000s underground rapper.

The duo consistently breaks from traditional hip-hop structures, though. “Velvet Swells” portrays a Lou Reed influence (it’s right in the title) and “Science is Stupid” is a calm indie backdrop for the quick rhymes.

Even the band’s backstory has entertainment baked into it. Retired Astronauts are composed of Tobagun and Laika, a duo who “happen upon experimental music as a way to further ensure the protection of our planet,” after a distinguished career as astronauts. What more can we say?