Review: Starving Poet – Eradicate Ex Machina

Ah! Finally. Music that acknowledges the death of “thinking straight”: a fraught, fidgety dollop of short attention span and clamouring priorities, built from the debris that clings to the nooks of consciousness: the residue of yesterday congealed into the idle passing of now, with visceral flashbacks of last night’s techno binge hacking into today’s swing drum recording session. This is the wreckage of numerous trains of thought in collision; not so much an overlap of ideas (serrated electronic noise, jet engine howls, cyborg overtone singing), but a mangling of too-much, crushing together recordings in a bid to fit them all into the frame. Excluding RN500’s seven-minute remix, there is less than 10 minutes of material here. Granted – given all of the disparate tempos and simultaneous realities on Eradicate Ex Machina, using a linear means of durational
measurement feels somewhat silly.

“La Cosa Nostra” is the centrepiece. Reverse hi-hats snip into a techno beats. Cut-ups of a live drum session interrupt a dancefloor in full flow; synths are pressed against the sidewalls as real(?) percussion steamrolls through the machines, ignoring the occasional interjections of programmed snare drums as it cues up a jazz standard that will never come. The track is followed by two brief passages of scrunched-up electronics: the first (“Supply Side Sutra”) like an American news ident looped over gunshots and four-to-the-floor throb, the second (“E-Fürther Futurist Flight”) like a destroyed collage of jet engines and Boeing cabin atmospheres, all howls and visceral altitudes. And while remixes are usually a means of deconstructing the source material, RN500’s effort sounds like restoration work – a steady (albeit syncopated) tempo ploughing through the bustle of cymbals, melodic loops and slapback delays. It’s still a restless track, helplessly infected by the agitation of Starving Poet’s source material.