Autoclav1.1 has always sort of been the odd man out on the Crunch Pod roster, informed less by aggression, fear or humor than by melancholy and heartbreak, and the project's latest release is no exception, combining bittersweet ambient harmonies with complex but gentle rhythmic programming. Things do get dark at times, as on "This Is Untitled," with its back-masked Gregorian chants and hard-hitting drum 'n' bass percussion, and the muffled choir and squealing seabirds on "All Unwired and Behind You" are ominous despite, or perhaps because of, their seemingly prosaic nature. Most of the darkness here, however, owes less to the death and violence themes of industrial than the all-too-human darkness of sadness. Opening track "Small Days" is sweetly sad, and the extended harmonies of "We All Have A Window" are so soft and sincere that they could almost be mistaken for New Age music, if not for their total lack of schmaltz. Remixes by such acts as Displacer and Detritus rearrange the originals in new ways without detracting from their naked emotion; even the usually brutal Unter Null provides a mix of "By My Own Admission" that's more touching than torturous. Tony Young, the man behind Autoclav1.1, wears his heart on his sleeve, but unlike the teary-eyed darlings of the emo scene, he understands subtlety. This is sweet, sad, intelligent music, utterly heartfelt but unburdened by faux sentiment, and carefully crafted enough to please the mathematically-minded fans of more emotionally abstract electronic artists like Autechre and Squarepusher.
Visit http://sentrymusic.com/autoclav.htm to learn more about Tony Young and his music.
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