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Reviews CD Reviews Noise Memmaker- How to Enlist in a Robot Uprising


ARTIST: Memmaker
ALBUM: How to Enlist in a Robot Uprising
LABEL: Hive Records
REVIEWER: Matthew J.
DATE: 6-23-08 

Memmaker- How to Enlist in a Robot Uprising

A new collaboration between producer Guillaume Nadon and Iszoloscope's Yann Faussurier, Memmaker brings power noise and terror EBM together with science fiction themes. Futuristic wars between man and machine have been a popular trope in dark electronic music going back at least as far as Front Line Assembly, but Nadon and Faussurrier make it quite clear that they're rooting for the robots from the very beginning. "Prophecy" begins the album with futuristic synth bombast in the vein of VNV Nation, but just when you think you're in for something solemn and beautiful, the machines take over in an onslaught of beats colliding in a train wreck of bass and distortion. The rest of the album is a nonstop thrill ride of power noise beats, urgent beeps, and the occasional bit of synthesized voice, as on the wonderfully titled "Death Audio Blow Your Brains," or frantic shouting in French, as on the ominous rhythmic noise track "Insomnia" or the brutal trance-infused "Death Comes (Sans Traitre)." While Faussurrier's power noise tendencies permeate Memmaker's work, this album is by and large a much more accessible offering than any of his solo work as Iszoloscope, less preoccupied with abyssal depths and gradual rhythmic evolutions than with simply offering up some heavy-duty club shakers. "Get Your Ass to Mars" is spaced out but funky, its speedy bass synth demanding obedience on the dance floor, and "Robot Buzz" is like an update of classic electro for the noise set, all metallic breakbeats, primal bass lines, and computerized vocals. If the duo's affection for classic cyborg dance music suggests a certain lightheartedness, it's only in comparison to the bleakness of Faussurier's other project, and Memmaker certainly has its fair share of dark moments. "Sneaking Through the Totalitarian Filter" is a speaker-shattering blitzkrieg of jackhammer kicks and jagged bass lines, and "Deception" uses moody synthesizers and a sample from "Pitch Black" about hating God to end the album on a particular pessimistic note. From Memmaker's pro-robot outlook, however, this can perhaps be viewed as a happy ending; the machines win, and humanity loses. This may seem grim from an organic life form's perspective, but take heart; at least the robots let you dance before killing you.

Join the robot rebellion at www.memmaker.ca.


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