Wednesday 24 June 2015

Review: Blush Response – 'Future Tyrants'

'Future Tyrants'

Blush Response's last release, 2014's 'Desire Machines' was a stunning blend of avant garde electronics and intelligent dance music that consolidated Joey Blush's position as arguably one of the most exciting electronic musicians around today. Utilising modular synthesizers, Blush blends a mixture of influences gleaned from glitch, ambient, industrial, ebm and electronica to create something truly fresh and modern. Fast forward two years and the now Berlin based artist releases his latest EP 'Future Tyrants' on Aufnahme + Wadergabe.

Where as his previous album recalled the recent works of artists such as Alec Empire, How To Destroy Angels, Aphex Twin and Squarepusher to name a few, 'Future Tyrants' has a much more old school ebm feel that is on the one hand dance friendly, but on the other nice and experimental. Distorted glitch elements combine with subtle dance beats and throbbing synth bass for a dark and satisfying sound that evokes the early works of acts such as Front 242, Skinny Puppy, Die Krupps, Cabaret Voltaire, and Front Line Assembly.

Opening with 'Civilian Slaughter' the album gets off to a near apocalyptic start sounding like early Skinny Puppy writing the opening score for an ultraviolent sci-fi film. The title track follows on with a more dance-friendly and less abrasive execution, but it nonetheless keeps its experimental core that is reminiscent of 'Twitch' era Ministry. 'Seven Rays' then opts for a relentlessly pounding rhythmic and bass-heavy approach making this easily the most club friendly and accessible cut on the album. The EP then finishes off with the seven-minute long 'Fenix', which builds up into more complicated rhythmic structures before fading out into droning synths.

The EP has a rough, old school kind of vibe, but it is most definitely a modern album. It has a definite early feel in atmosphere but the instrumentation, mixing and overall production sound perfect. Even at its most distorted and experimental points it doesn't sacrifice any of its quality.

'Future Tyrants' is another feather in Joey Blush's cap showing him to be a true master of his art. The album is comprised of instrumentals, and that may turn off those who like a nice lyric or two to get stuck into, but it doesn't hold it back. These are four bold and forceful tracks that demand to be heard and leave you feeling satisfied. Fans of the old school sound will immediately dig it, while those newer to the classic ebm / electro-indutrial scene will still find this an accessible point of reference.  

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