Feb 2018 02

Black Asteroid - ThrustBlack Asteroid
Category: Electronic / Techno / Experimental
Album: Thrust
Blurb: Penetrating rhythms, abrasive electronic textures, and a monochromatic audiovisual aesthetic – all hallmarks of Bryan Black’s singular and inimitable style, all presented in a techno tour-de-force that makes Thrust one of his purest artistic achievements.


Musician, producer, sound designer, DJ, fashion designer – these are just a few of the hats that Bryan Black has worn through his illustrious career. His penchant for minimalist textures and exploratory sound design have established benchmarks in underground electro and industrial music, with Black Asteroid being his current creative outlet. After six years of touring, DJing, and releasing several EPs under the moniker, Thrust marks his first full-length album as Black Asteroid. True to its title, Thrust is a sensory feast of pervasive and infectious techno rhythms offset by stark atmospheres of insistent bass and synth sequences and abrasive yet sensual electronic textures, backed by some notable guest vocalists and fashion designer Rick Owens collaborating on the album’s audiovisual aesthetic.

The opening title track enters with an overdriven bass as layers of shrill electronics enter give the impression of a faulty engine attempting to rev up; it’s deceptively simple in its construction, but full of the sort of nuance that only Black can deliver, setting the stage for the album’s architectural exercise in sonic brutalism. With the blunt baritone of Cold Cave’s Wesley Eisold delivering sparse but penetrative lyrics that resonate and mesh with the instrumentals, tracks like “Black Moon,” “Here Comes Fear,” and “Sun Explodes” prod at the listener’s eardrums with pernicious beats that are striking in their simplicity, stabs and sweeps of caustic glitch-laden electronics threatening to drown the listener in a pool of oily black acid. Zola Jesus lends the appropriately titled “Howl” her melodic and ghostly voice amid a throbbing bass and crackles of harsh waves of noise, making for one of the album’s strangest but most powerful and poppy moments, while the seething distorted sweeps, cold sustained pads, and almost laughably simple dance beats of “Tangiers” are made all the more ominous by the smoky rasp of Michele Lamy, her French accent adding an exotic touch of menace. Even without vocals, tracks like “Metal Drums” with its snappy drumbeats and pulsating bass and the closing “Chromosphere,” on which moaning and metallic pads interact with oppressive siren-esque stabs of bassy synth, are certain to send the listener into a fury of danceable tension.

Meshing of audio austerity and dissonance with stimulating erogenous rhythms, coupled with a similarly engaging and monochromatic visual style, Thrust is Bryan Black at his purest and most inspired. His sound resides in the dark space between techno and industrial, where android runaway models decked out in leather and shiny chrome strut along decrepit and dimly lit urban squalor, and this record possesses all the hallmarks that he’s been establishing since his earliest days as a sound designer at the late Prince’s Paisley Park. Not unlike Throb, his last release as Haloblack more than a decade ago, Thrust presents a tautly corrosive soundtrack to a dark night’s lascivious activity, setting a new standard for experimental techno and minimalist electronica.
Track list:

  1. Thrust
  2. Black Moon (feat. Cold Cave)
  3. Howl (feat. Zola Jesus)
  4. Space Junk
  5. Tangiers (feat. Michele Lamy)
  6. Metal Drums
  7. Here Comes Fear (feat. Cold Cave)
  8. Moon
  9. Sun Explodes (feat. Cold Cave)
  10. Chromosphere

Black Asteroid
Website, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, YouTube
Last Gang Records
Website, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, YouTube
Purchase at:
Amazon MP3
Ilker Yücel (Ilker81x)

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