"Composed by human, played by physical robots." Frankly, Electromancy's is one of the more intriguing elevator pitches that has slid across my desk here at Ye Olde Sleeping Village Industries. Besides piquing curiosity in regards to the actual sound of the purported experimental black/death metal, the notion of robots playing music raises a lot of questions on a practical level. As it turns out, this is no mere gimmick: composer Satyra was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 2018, which made playing instruments an impossibility. As such, they spent two years designing robots specifically for the task at hand: playing the music.
Given the potential complexity in ability, Electromancy is able to do things that human instrumentalists are not. That alone presents a very existing avenue for exploration, and on "The Spark," the track (and accompanying video) that we are pleased to present here today, a taste of that potential experimentation and oddity is on full display. However, before we scare you away with our ramblings, we recommend giving "The Spark" a watch and listen below. See those robots in action!
Even without the knowledge that robots were involved, my first impression upon hearing "The Spark" is that it sounds tantalizingly unhuman. Its a little too fast, too precise, and too melodically intricate to have been birthed from mere mortal hands. The video itself provides a wonderful insight into how this human/robot amalgamation is achieved--which, in and of itself, is wholly engrossing to watch. The track itself is equally intriguing, with a furious freneticism that captures pure chaos far more intensely than the vast majority of black metal. It feels brutal while simultaneously feeling industrially clinical--the emotive edge isn't gone, so much as existing on a plane beyond our typical experience. And, even if you're just in it to see robots play black metal, it's a n experience worth your while.
This track (and the EP from whence it came) are a feat in more ways than one. Indeed, says Electromancy: "When I first composed the song 'The Spark' my health was at an extremely low point. My hands were so dysfunctional that I had to write the whole thing with my feet, stepping on the electronics and using the computer mouse with my toes. I kept thinking that if I could even write one song like this that would be an incredible feat. I am so grateful to be releasing not just this one song, but an EP and a full on music video as well (plus much more to come!). This is a great introduction & real first breath for the sound and vision of Electromancy. Thank you!"
"The Spark" is one of two tracks featured on Electromancy's Robot Black Metal, which is out today, April 30th, and available on bandcamp. If this track caught yer ear, check out the equally excellent cover of Darkthrone's "Transylvanian Hunger."
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and loud enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry.
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