Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Quick Hit: All Atomic

August 1, 2020

All Atomic‘s Sirens of the Sun EP is excellent sci-fi techno. The four tracks here each have a William Gibson-esque cyberpunk allure: the vibe is neon on black, tall buildings, fast vehicles, and low-key danger baked in. It’s got a similar vibe to Daft Punk’s Tron soundtrack, but if every track were a chase scene. All Atomic creates this space through deft use of arpeggiators, traditionally “digital” sounding synths, and a pressing urgency to each of the tunes that creates excitement. Opener “Code A” establishes the tone of the EP immediately with punchy live drums, thrumming arpeggiator, and eventually a four-on-the-floor bass drive. It’s the speediest of all the tracks, zipping along impressively. It’s got enough dance in it to be on a dancefloor somewhere–somewhere, perhaps, in a futuristic club from a sci-fi movie. (And don’t we move closer to being in a futuristic sci-fi movie all the time, huh?)

“Sequence 1” still leans on arpeggiators, but has more of a laidback groove than the first cut. The zinging synths still speak heavily to cyberpunk, but the vibe is more dense here due to the thick bass synth use. More ominous, less frantic, still great. “Sirens of the Sun” continues in this vein–there’s still a lot of motion, but the ominous overtones are primary (again through the bass synth use). This one has a lot of different synth tones going on, creating an impressive sonic space. Closer “A Dove 4 Love” is a different type of chase scene; this has a lot of cat-and-mouse in it, as the overhead textural synths contrast against the four-on-the-floor menace of the bass and percussion. The stuttering click keeps the energy high throughout the tension. If you’re a fan of cyberpunk sounds, leftfield dance, or Daft Punk’s Tron, I’m inviting you to take a trip with All Atomic.

Tags:

Stephen Carradini and Lisa Whealy write reviews of instrumental, folk, and singer/songwriter music. We write about those trying to make the next step in their careers and established artists.

Recent Posts

Categories

Independent Clauses Monthly E-mail

Get updates and information about IC, plus opportunities for bands.
Band name? PR company? Business?
* = required field

Archives