Thursday, July 25, 2013
Chevalier Avant Garde on Beko Records
The same way that the garage rock stripped down sound of a three piece recording in a shitty space with one mic is proving itself timeless, this souped up hyper-future sound of electronic pop from Montreal's Chevalier Avant Garde is also never going to go away. These square sine waves signify broken promises of hover cars (and skateboards) in a way like nothing else. They unapologetically stand in as poor substitutes for the instrument they fail at trying to replicate is what makes them good in a weird way. Chevalier Avant Garde is working with these forgotten elements and erasing a lot of the human hand in the process.
"Hilary" after a ghostly choir this comes on in a tidal wave ancient technology, super choppy synth and drum machine hisses remind me of Lust for Youth, but clearer. Take away all of the underwater production and layers of muddy tape multiple takes and create it in a decidedly happier place and you'd end up with something like Chevalier. Don't get me wrong, the tension and alienation inherent in something this anti-human is still there, it just seems to have a little bit of a dance aspiration. Even when church bells ring in over the stompy 808 beat it comes off as the melancholy emo '80s, not with the terror of Soft Moon. Anything remotely human has been smothered, especially the heavily echo buried vocal with mechanized drums and the layers of electric piano that have been chopped right off with heavy gates and attack. The synth melody is a real mystery of balancing all the bleeps and bloops which at first listen don't obviously feel like they're working together, but have their own internal logic at work. The obviously real electric guitar which is present in the far off background feels a lot like when New Order would feel like they're relying too heavily on the technology.
B-Side's "Those Who Suffer" uses more robotic synth waves in a jagged delivery, like that first side when you pick out the layers of different pieces it's nothing but chaos until that smack of fake snare lines up with the kick. Literally someone just jabbing away in rhythm but gradually reveals itself to be a complex pattern and exercise of control. They're in love with these ancient sounds that aren't trying to be anything but what they are. Vocally the way they bury this under heavy echo and delay while the rest of the track is so clear, it almost feels like a different song, but they're gong for that contrast and maybe a little bit, giving in to the orderly atmosphere the machines create. You get the feeling that in Terminator, these guys might be one of the few bands allowed to play in a bar for the robots.
You can pick this up from Beko Records, imported from overseas or ask you local distro for this one.