The debut full-length from Alex Suarez’s Cienfuegos project is named after a particular kind of military coup, so you can imagine that Autogolpe isn’t going to pull very many punches. Indeed, this is a heavy and dark listen, whether it is pummelling the listener with industrial beats or creating more abstract sections of oppression. LP on L.I.E.S.
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- Autogolpe by Cienfuegos
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The only reason I’m certain Cienfuego’s ‘Autogolpe’ isn’t a Vatican Shadow side project is that the track titles, obviously political as they are, are never longer than four words. This is an album that is self-consciously about powerful. An autogolpe is when a country's leader, whether or not they have been democratically elected, carries out a coup, strengthening their own grip on power. The tracks are heavy and propulsive too. As our friend Mr Isaac Newton has shown, force equals mass times acceleration. It takes a lot of force to successfully pull of a coup.
The best track on here is 'Opened Cell', a sliver of frankly terrifying trance. This track perhaps best captures the album title. I can only imagine that any autogolpe would lead to confusion, would be disorienting, and of course would necessarily be mighty. But there’s always a sense of fragility. All these tracks carry that duality in their heart. Yes these men (they are usually men) are great now, but as is all too easy to discern from history, such a political act merely puts you in someone else’s sights. The repetition of electronic music is the ideal medium to express the many circles which define futility of the sort of power.
I’m idealistic enough to think that the people will always win, that democracy will one day overcome dictatorships. And I think Cienfuegos agrees, “Desire / Disgust” ends the album on a beatless, more optimistic note. The drums of history can be silenced.
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