Save The Robot – Soul Analogy EP (Iboga)

Posted in Reviews 2009 by - September 29, 2009

Sigh. As Save The Robot, Alien Project and Quadra have created some of the most exquisitely dire electronic music of recent years, culminating in an incredibly ill-advised and even more ill-conceived remix of War’s Lowrider (which I would love to link to an MP3 of for you to see how f*ing dreadful it is, but I think I’d best direct you to this google search instead.)

Soldding awful, I’m sure you’ll agree.

They are the latest in the  latest in the increasingly long and blithering line of psytrance artists who are ditching fullon in favour of daytime minimal/electro/techno/whatever music. One can only assume that this is beacause they no longer “like” the fullon “scene”, which strikes me as something of an oddity given that the people making the exodus to the techno-side are the very ones who wrecked fullon for everyone in the first place.

It’s a bit like saying — “I’ve smeared my own excrement over this big plate of chocolate mousse. I no longer like the taste of this chocolate mousse, so I’m going to have a bit of that Vanilla Slice over on the next table.”

We would all be in reasonable agreement that Save The Robot are merchants of the very drivveliest of all talentless drivels. Alien Project is famous for recycling large portions of his music and has for a long time been misguided as to his artistic and psychedelic importance. This approach is carried onto the Vanilla Slice of ploddy go-nowhere post-progressive house music.

Soul Analogy quickly drops into a groove that it then proceeds to sit on like a penguin warming an egg. It doesn’t change. It doesn’t even shift. There’s no subtlety, no soul, just this stupifyingly simple groove that hangs around getting on everyone’s tits like a homeless window-washer at a set of traffic lights.

It’s only brief period of excitement is a three — count’em, three– a three-note synth riff where you can just see Ari Linker trying as hard as he fucking can not to play the lead to Paul Van Dyk’s For An Angel on the two good fingers of his one good hand. And just about succeeding.

Meanwhile “on the flipside” of this imaginary binary record is Mars Needs Time, a mess of a track that’s essentially all  bass thump and percussion peppers, with a breakdown that thinks it’s “large” but has mistaken being “large” for just being “long”.

It’s messy. It’s amateurish. It sounds unfinished, unmastered. This, put simply, is a simply awful release.

I’m not quire sure to whom the vitriol should best be directed.  It is tempting to launch it all squarely at the producers, but I’m not sure whether that’s the most appropriate course of action. We all know that they are two of the most fudgey, lacklustre producers around so why should we expect anything different?

Tell the truth — when you opened this page to read this review, were you expecting the release to be a load of rubbish? Did you think to yourself “Oooo, Save the Robot, that’ll be shit” and click on a link with a hint of the same childish glee that compells me to maintain psyreviews?

 I would expect that you probably did. We all probably did.

All of us, that is, with the exception of Iboga Digital’s A&R  department who as we have recently seen are treading on thin ice.

The label people need to be gently reminded that while the digital medium is wonderful for increasing “choice”, this should not be done at the expense of “quality”.

Which is interesting, because if you write CHOICE QUALITY in block letters on a piece of paper then hold it upside down in front of a mirror, you can still read the letters of CHOICE but not of QUALITY. Bizarre, and infinitely more engaging than this release, which I believe we have all forgotten about  already.


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