Saturday, January 15, 2005

Jamming and noise



Not to sound too cynical, but when I first heard Autolux I thought of Sophia Coppola. Well, Air penned the soundtrack for Teenage Suicides and My Bloody Valentine (along with Kevin Shields new material, they also feature on the Lost in Translation soundtrack) are both revered and offer obvious comparisons to the band. Of course, this isn’t a bad thing really. In fact Autolux have quite a pedigree themselves. Featuring ex members of Ednaswap and the severely underrated Failure. Failure were shoehorned into the all but dead grunge movement due to vocalist Greg Edwards' unfortunate and occasional vocal similarities to Kurt Cobain, and have been mostly overlooked since.

However, at the beginning of last year, Autolux had the enviable task of promoting an album that had already gathered a great deal of critical praise, so what happened? Well, unless the album makes a huge resurgence, good reviews have not translated into sales for Autolux and the album has not seen an official release date the UK as of yet. Well, at least I don’t think it has. Maybe winkin Tom could namedrop Future Perfect as his favourite album of last year. It really shouldn't need his help though. The album works. Actually, it work especially well if you listen to it through your headphones. Scratch that. You shouldn't be allowed to review this album without listening to it through headphones - in my opinion.

I can’t see the album ever receiving any plaudits in the UK anyway. Could noise manipulation and mood music like this could ever be that popular? Ok, it does have a wistfully dreamlike quality, at times, but it’s also challenging. It goes against the norm. It combines punk, shoegazer, and noise-rock and makes no secret of its love for early 90’s alt-rock (Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine) WHO COULD POSSIBLY LIKE IT. Anyway I thought it was one of the strongest albums of last year; even if this wasn’t immediately apparent to me.

Autolux - Robots in the Garden

Buy @ Insound
Website @ Autolux.org

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