Classical music with a crazy MIDI execution.
Classically trained Aārp shuns everything natural for his new album ‘Propaganda’ whilst containing everything you’d know and love from classical music. The album is entirely made of synths and every note, bend, beat and noise had to be triggered live by hand. Within these constraints, the album idea was born. ‘Propaganda’ literally takes fake sound and triggers it all live.
This makes for an unusual album from the outset. Firstly, each track name is a quote from a world leader. Spot Maggie Thatchers ‘There is no alternative’ and Bush’s ‘The Axis Of Evil’ as early track names. Then corporation propaganda gets the elbow with ‘Less than 1% of patients become addicted’ from an Oxycontin commercial. Even ‘Green Economy’ gets poked into the spotlight. Each track is a statement on intent to look deeper into the issue raised and why that statement does not contain the full truth – from Aārp’s perspective at least.
This album encourages you to research but it also encourages you to listen continuously and carefully. Each track plays on familiar classical themes but then gives them a vaporwave makeover. The beats are thin and clicky. The synths are wiry and spiky. Most of the tracks feel like they are spokes of a wheel spinning around at speed plucking synths music like a music box would do. Yes, you can dance to them but that’s not really the point. The idea here is that you start off with a melody or a chord structure and slowly over the course of each track it unravels or becomes noisy. The essence of what made the original melody becomes distorted and manipulated much like the words of their titles. Some tracks turn into skittish micro-techno pieces. Others play with pitch bending or frequency tuning. They all veer off their path though and into something a little more murky or chaotic.
Aārp has certainly created an experimental art piece that I think will appeal to experimental and synth music lovers on two levels. The first is that the tracks themselves are great to listen to. It feels like an analogue take on modular synths. Those that then want to dive further can really explore patterns that change, the way the politics of propaganda work with the song quotes and explore their own truths out for themselves. Art can be great at a surface level as well as on a deeper level and Aārp has successfully created an album like that with ‘Propaganda’. I recommend seeing the music video for ‘There Is No Alternative’ below to see how it pairs with visuals too and I hope that other tracks get this treatment too,
Recommended track: Condamnez-vous les Violences [Editocrates]
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