Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Designed Entropy on Gold Robot Records

Hunter from Gold Robot Records was kind enough to send along some of his latest 7" releases of this past year, which I'll be getting to in the next few days/ was a lot. He currently has a Railcars single still available, and a European tour 12"just finished, and it looks amazing...I'm working on a review of the Railcars full length from Stumparumper and have to pick up a copy of this single from GRR. Randomly I picked up the Bonnie Prince Billy single he put out a while back and it's will be grabbed if this place ever goes up in flames.

So I started with this interesting looking 4 way split from a bunch of artists I have no previous experience with....which made this an obvious choice. That's the beauty of these little pieces of vinyl, they free the wallet up just a little for some experimentation.
The sleeve even delivers on the entropy promise with the opening for the record being 180 degrees from where you think it should be, and then the back image is counterclockwise from there...controlled chaos.
The first track from Bomarr 'Exchanges among systems' takes a page from Kraftwerk's pure analogue synth sounds that reproduce great on vinyl. There's nothing like being in the middle of nowhere with a copy of Transeurope Express played as loud as's a life changing experience. A slow, cool calculated track based around variations of simple ancient drum machine patterns with plodding sustained it's purest form... the foundation. Alien.
Copy's up next with 'Karate eyes', a pure dance driven catchy as heck instrumental track coming from a place closer to this decade. You'd think one great melody would be enough, but they keep building on one another, and dropping out, swapping basslines for could go on a lot longer in it's pure optimism. It's impossible to fault the pure craftsmanship of the otherwise common elements.
But sooner or later you have to flip this over to check out Meanest Man Contest's Takitani Edit. MMC has a 7" of their own on GRR, which I recognized up next. It's a subtle arrangement of live samples...piano, kettle drums...all those eclectic one note foreign percussion sounds. They're all pulled from the closet to provide their own weird rhythm for some Xiu Xiu sounding vocals.
There's a great sample of what I'm pretty sure is William Burroughs talking about the 'inevitable rat race'...classic.
Roman Ruins (who it happens, plays with Beach House) rounds the disc out with another pretty optimistic sounding electronic based track 'Plea for Permanence'...(a great title against the band name), the sunny electronics joined by acoustic guitar slowly make their way to meet a Menomena sounding huge room drum kit beat deliberately mic'd close and loud which elevates this another floor or two, if it wasn't high enough already.
It's a satisfying peek into 4 electronic artists brought together by GRR in an exploration of music's various architecture.

A1 : Bomarr - Exchanges Among Systems
A2 : Copy - Karate Eyes
B1 : Meanest Man Contest - Takitani Edit
B2 : Roman Ruins - Plea For Permanence

All pressed on opaque goldish, swirly vinyl. Nice.

Gold Robot says:
The first entry in the Designed Entropy series features exclusive tracks by 4 different artists inspired from a common starting point. As a cohesive unit, this EP explores the relationship between design, structure, and humanity. Suggested reading to accompany the listening experience: "Atlas of Novel Tectonics" by Jesse Reiser.

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