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Listening to art. Playing with audio. Sounding out technology. Composing in code. Rewinding the soundscape.

Spanish StutterPop MP3 EP

Drones are simply one end of a very long musical continuum. At the far opposite side is, arguably, music possessed by the rhythmic jitters. Take the recent EP by Bacanal Intruder, Room-a-Tronic, released on the Spanish netlabel So Soft (at sosoft.tk). Its six tracks whiz, blip and otherwise mechanically make their way by, each melodic line subdivided into countless little pieces, strung together like some carefully staged event. It’s no coincidence that they have the charm of a stop-motion short, because that’s what they are: little triumphs of staccato ingenuity. The track “Lowid” provides swiftly plucked guitar amid water-drop percussion, along with the fuzzy comfort of static dissonance and an occasional vocal utterance. “Wearing Nice Shirts with Legs” introduces a harmonica into the mix. The ingredients are different, but the recipe, which is quite perfect, remains largely the same. This is Eadweard Muybridge’s idea of electronic pop. “Morning Meeting for Dinner” makes good on the common if base desire of musical tourists: shuttling some regional sound (in this case the low-strung drama of Spanish guitar) through the universal translator of tech. To quote one of the song titles on Room-a-Tronic, “All Those Clicks, Miks and Bips Will Just Make You Crazy.” Crazy for Bacanal Intruder, that is.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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  • Marc Weidenbaum founded the website Disquiet.com in 1996 at the intersection of sound, art, and technology, and since 2012 has moderated the Disquiet Junto, an active online community of weekly music/sonic projects. He has written for Nature, Boing Boing, The Wire, Pitchfork, and NewMusicBox, among other periodicals. He is the author of the 33 1⁄3 book on Aphex Twin’s classic album Selected Ambient Works Volume II. Read more about his sonic consultancy, teaching, sound art, and work in film, comics, and other media

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