April 27, 2012

Ancient Thing

That picture up top? That's Michael Falsetto-Mapp and Jon Bernson, aka Exray's, on god damn Mars I bet. That's how cool they are. They're so cool their band name - "Exray's" - has an apostrophe even when they're not doing something (vis a vis, an implied ellipsis) or possessing something. They're description on facebook is "with an apostrophe". Love it. To some extent, I like to connect that deliberate dissonance, this "thing" without a "thing" in spite of the apostrophe's implication, with the dystopain themes of their new album Trust a Robot and the incredible juxtaposition of experimental beats, synths that variously crunch and move songs along in symbiotic instrumental arrangements, with Bernson's almost trademark vocal tempo. Howells' description of the album references Philip K. Dick and a whole sequence of connected humanists who wrote sympathetically about darker worlds suffering in stagnant social structures. That is the disconnect; between reality and irreality, good and bad structures, and the robot they exhort you to trust - is it "Exray's" or someone else's? A free agent? The edifying positivity and humanity that the aforementioned juxtaposition conjures detracts on first listen from any overarching sense of 'high concept', but ultimately it's certainly what makes Trust a Robot such a beautiful album.

Stream/Download: Exray's - Ancient Thing


They've also just floated a new remix they did for Latent Sea, adding Bernson's vocals and a more mellow sensibility to their well honed, high intensity electro-pop.

Stream/Download: Latent Sea - Light Holes (Exray's Remix)   
Grab their new album Trust a Robot from Howell's Transmitter.

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