Recent reviews:

9/17: Figueroa
9/14: Entartung
9/10: Camila Nebbia
9/7: Fleshdriver
9/3: Golden Fang
8/31: Worsel Strauss & Schani Wolf
8/27: Martin Denny
8/24: Dead Swells
8/13: Merlock
8/10: The Delay
in the Universal Loop

Archives (1991-2020)

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It is what it is not

This sounds a lot like one of those American primitive guitar albums with shoegaze-y vocals and the occasional organ. Which is strange enough as it is. But then it turns out there is no guitar actually being played.

The World As We Know It

Amon Tobin has created one of the most intriguing electronic albums I've heard in some time. Most of these songs were written years ago, and they found their current form under the tutelage of producer Sylvia Massey. She envisioned this astonishing sound and had Tobin re-record his songs to fit that dream.

And so, while there are many familiar trappings wrapped into the production, I'm pretty sure no one has ever tried to craft a sound in this way. Tobin's vision deserves plaudits, as does Massey's skill in the booth. And yes, I'm still talking about the sound without actually getting to the songs themselves. There's a reason. They don't exist without the atmosphere created by Tobin and Massey. I can't even imagine what the bones might sound like. Well, I can, but it's hard. And I'm not sure I could explain it with any confidence.

If this album is anything, it is pretty much the opposite of the title. The groundbreaking nature of this set is not apparent at first, but those geeks (like me) who are fascinated by sonic construction will be over the moon. And if you like to disappear into an album without a net, Figueroa has room for you as well. One of the under-the-radar masterpieces of the year, for sure.