Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Loving... "hunang skrímsli" by damn robot!

Monday past was a great day for new music. The Fierce & The Dead... Moby... Lowercase Noises... Jane's Scenic Drive... and the debut album from the Honey brothers aka damn robot!

Tom Honey is the man behind "good weather for an airstrike" and Hawkmoon Records. Whereas Rob Honey is the man behind "inachus". This is the first time they have worked together and what a pairing it is.

The opening track "a smile spreads across my face" is a glorious slice of electronica with skittering beats over a bedrock of layered atmospheric synths and a faithful baseline. This soundscape is then complemented with the sugestion of ethereal vocals and radio samples... making it very reminiscent of "boards of canada"... before the feedback comes into earshot.

We then move to "the great landfill in the sky"... a track used on the second Hawkmoon Records compilation. Slower, more melancholic bass underpins what sounds like French or Italian commentary. I would love to know more of the context of the commentary... if it was for a football game then what a game it must have been! Layers of delayed synths and keys swirl around the words making an inviting and encompassing soundscape.

"(Pass) the switch over" is the first of two really well executed dissonant "skits"... wee slices of noise and vocal samples that conjure up the pain and despair that is channel-hopping on British TV when there is nothing on.

We are then presented with, for me, the stand out track "no slack, but luckily the seats go back" which has a deliciously inviting guitar-orientated melody that reminds me of the Madchester sound of the late 80s. This is confirmed with Ian Brown-esque vocals over some seriously strong processed backbeats... bringing to mind UNKLE too.

Next up is the second "skit"... "these plugs need adapters" which is similarly inciting... feeding the conscious with wee snippets of memory and noise.

From here we move to "electric sheep? I can't tell whether or not this is a dream" with it's subtle sample of Roy Batty's monologue at the end of "bladerunner" intertwined with skittering beats and upbeat future-house synths. It is a delicious combination that reminds me why I love IDM like this. There is a vocal sample played in this track that I can't quite get... that adds to the charm and makes me come back for more.

"Antics" starts off with some crisp guitar picking before evolving into a vibrant electronic wall-of-sound with a spacey processed backbeat... and the hint of ethereal female vocals and snatches of conversation. Again, another reminder of why I love IDM so much.

Last up is "errors of the pacifist" which opens with reverb & distorted guitar before morphing into the most beautiful electric piano... which is then overwhelmed in a wondrous wall-of-sound with precociously processed beats and a stream of consciousness delivered through artificial vocal means. Vocal samples fade in and out... as the beats become more glitchy & fractured... before reducing to silence.

Haunting echoes hint at a return.

A return that comes in manner of crisp beats, processed vocals and a chirpy wee melody... before fading to the end.

I really enjoyed "hunang skrimsli" by damn robot... because it reminded me of all I love in IDM... the beats... the vocal samples... the layers of sound and melody. I was very impressed... and I hope you will be too?

Well recommended... and a free download too!


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