AUT2M – Introspection
AUT2M is a Dutch electronic producer whose debut for the Pyramids label is a seven-track trip though the tunnels of ghost tech. Now where most ghost tech is a bit darker, a bit more skeletal, Introspection has a bit more city-lights flair to it – like the difference between Radiohead’s The King of Limbs and In Rainbows. There are chords that are (shock!) major-key and there are rhythms set to move just as much as they are to nod the head in one’s own space.
Whereas previous album Улучшенный жизнь utilized dubstep-influenced hardvapor and MCMLXX was vaportrap with disco, Introspection is just that – an introspective techno album that’s aiming for something a bit more in the headspace. The track titles demonstrate as such: we’ve got “What Do I Rule But Nothing,” “The Endless Alleyways Of My Mind,” and “The Monarch Is I, And Only I.” A bit esoteric? Possibly, but this is a pretty abstract album, so it gets away with it okay.
Generally speaking, Introspecition is a rather tight album, but its longer tracks tend to meander. “The Monarch Is I, And Only I” has a strong bassline that’s reminiscent of UK garage music, but it can’t entirely carry a movement that’s mostly a synth arpeggio. “Waking Up To An Empty World” is cyberpunky in the way of quite a bit of HKE’s summer and fall ’16 output, but it relies to heavily on a dubstep-ish hook that loses momentum after the first two minutes. Notable aversions are the old-school rave shop of “The Abrupt Termination” and the chic groove of “Fortification Of The Brain” – the latter of which is easily one of the strongest tracks on Pyramids yet.
It’s tempting to view Introspection as a holding pattern for AUT2M, especially since it follows two albums of incredibly dissimilar styles, but that’s not entirely fair. AUT2M is influenced by so many aspects of electronic music culture, and Introspection is the result of that. It’s even in the title: the word “introspection” implies searching, figuring things out, and critically analyzing oneself. It might be a bit lost in its own thoughts, but those thoughts are slowly forming together.
1. Waking Up to an Empty World – (6:22)
2. Fortification of the Brain – (6:38)
3. Revelations and the Consequences – (6:22)
4. The Monarch is I, and I Only – (6:42)
5. What Do I Rule but Nothing – (5:31)
6. The Abrupt Termination – (4:54)
7. The Endless Alleyways of My Mind – (4:32)