Yorkshire’s Mark Fell (SND, Sensate Focus) and Budapest’s Gábor Lázár destroy yet another laptop with a Max/MSP rhythm freak out. Mixing of Fell’s signature Linn drum and metal scraping synthetics that twist the groove as much as your sorry little head. An absolute essential for fans of SND, Autechre, Emptyset.
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- The Neurobiology of Moral Decision Making by Mark Fell + Gabor Lazar
If you already know Gábor Lázár’s music then you’re probably already a Mark Fell fan and so you won’t be surprised that this collaboration between them has yielded what has to be some of the most rhythmically radical and seizure-inducing futurist electronica being made on planet Earth right now. Using a minimal palette of sharp percussive hits and mutating slabs of sound that stretch, slice, percolate, multiply, turn inside out and God knows what else, the duo make music that sounds like a mathematics thesis being cooked up by boffins in a lab while simultaneously producing a visceral, hyperkinetic funk effect.
The duo’s sound is profoundly abstract and in the grand tradition of hard-edged non-referential art, there’s no bothering with track titles here; as if applying the mundane syntax of conventional language might diminish the startlingly alien quality of the tracks. Though that’s not to say that, like in most of Fell’s work, you can’t hear traces of the house-music origins of this sound- it’s just that the music here well and truly crumples up the synchronized grid template of most dance musics. What we get instead is a supremely dynamic, mercurial sense of structure that constantly confounds expectations as to what you think music should and can do- sometimes setting up a mesmerising pattern and then pulling the rug from under you by introducing some obtuse psychoacoustic shift. Unsurprisingly for an album that sometimes sounds like how I imagine electroconvulsive therapy must feel, it can be an intimidating listen, but I guess that’s to be expected from anything that’s truly mind-blowing.
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