Sometimes the online world reveals unsuspected parallel dimensions. This is an unknown restyle of Neural independently (and secretly as we never knew about it) made by NY-based Motion and Graphic Designer, Clarke Blackham. Very nicely made, perhaps only a bit glossier for the magazine’s line, it testifies once more how even your most familiar outcomes can have another life somewhere else.
CD – Raster
There is no future without tears and here the work centres on sensory processing by human-machine hybrids. It’s not the first time Uwe Schmidt aka Atom™ focuses on sounds bordering on pop, soaked with a glitch aesthetic. These are sounds and narrations of the technological present, but easily digestible for an audience that does not want to engage with the conceptual details of the project. We might call this new electronic genre Hard code pop. In this case Atom™ performs with X1N, an entity for the generation of human voice and contents in natural language, an approach not so far from what Holly Herndon implemented in Proto. It doesn’t really matter that in “R3V” the refrain “the revolution will not be online” is a sort of mix between “We Want Your Soul” by Adam Freeland and “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” by Gil Scott Heron, to mention the most famous influences. The hyper-centrifuge of applied and recombined technology gives life to new constellations of meaning, as in the ideally continuous loop of the first and last track, “Almost a Unit”, an evocative dissertation on artificial intelligence and machines deep learning, where, beneath the cache of hidden references we are reminded of the synthetic vocal experiments of Laurie Anderson. The robotic voice of X1N reminds us that “in the broad surface of all the mathematical equations it’s possible to hear events which seem to come from other dimensions”. The setting this time is definitely post-apocalyptic and less ironic than in former works (for example the masterpiece Pop Artificielle (1998)) despite the presence of some playful moments. Take, for example, “ac boy/dc girl”, a track infused with some circuit bending themes. The work is a must for any valuable collection, especially in the classic vinyl vintage format and with the elegant paperboard cover, an artwork made by the creative partnership of Atom ™ and X1N with Olaf Bender, the historical designer and co-founder of Raster-Noton, now divided into two entities, and in this case simply Raster, the label producing this release.
Atom™ – <3