Beat-driven instrumental electronica often builds as it goes along — following a disorienting bit of opening noise, there’s a rhythm track, then some half-broken sound that’s treated like a lead instrument, then a sinuous unknowable that adds flesh to the bones, then variations on that sequence, one after another, perhaps one or another dropping out, momentarily, but ultimately moving forward, and gaining in dimension. The elements gather force. The overall structure may bear the hallmarks of, or otherwise hint at the structure of, the pop song — the verse, the chorus, the repetition thereof interrupted by a bridge — but the strength of it is how those elements join up, get confused, reveal something about each other as they come into conflict.
In “The Pain” by Surachai and Justin, the sounds get heavier and thicker as they move along (MP3). Patterns come into view as the piece makes its way, splintering occasionally, like a module’s short circuited or a plug-in has crashed, until the monotony becomes its own force, and then the splintering comes back for real, and the whole thing just collapses, beautifully.
The track’s part of a two-piece set at trashaudio.com.