A.M. Architect
Pattern Language


3.0
good

Review

by Jonny Hunter CONTRIBUTOR (105 Reviews)
February 12th, 2013 | 5 replies


Release Date: 02/05/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The best kind of clusterf*ck

As every child should know, mixing every colour of paint is disappointing. The result is a kind of infected brown instead of the wonder colour needed to elevate your finger painting to a level of brilliance not seen since Picasso. Music can work just the same: if you were to grab a drum track, throw in some guitar rhythms, and then pile on synths, distorted vocals, flute leads, maybe another drum track, then the same track reversed, keyboards, ambient hums, crackles. the occasional cough and god knows what else, you’d end up with a bit of a mess. Luckily, A.M. Architect are not you, because they know what they’re doing. When A.M. Architect decide to mix every instrument and style under the sun at once, the result doesn’t imitate a multi-carriage train wreck, instead it resembles a swarm: thousands of individual parts moving and acting as one.

It might then be a surprise to learn how Pattern Language defies its busy-ness (deliberate misspelling) to strive for a very sincere and emotionally calm form of instrumental hip-hop. Strong percussion and electric piano often lay down the tone for the myriad other parts to buzz around, making tracks feel as if they progress slowly despite how rapid the various clicks and plucks may feel. There are points where the cluster of noise might become a distraction from the melody and mood, but for the most part A.M. Architect keep it tight. Vocal cuts provide most of the emotion in Pattern Language, though it’s rarely the focus as rhythm and texture are given the frontman position.

At its most brilliant, Pattern Language plays with this fog of instruments to reveal individual elements that might have been ignored otherwise. An inspired moment in “Window” sees the vocals temporarily dominate to form a desperate, surreal freeze-frame in the middle of an incredibly rapid moving picture. “Pools of Light” acts similarly by repeatedly dunking the listener into the raging river of instrumentation with only brief moments of respite. Elsewhere the album does lose focus slightly, even bordering on dirgy at times, with tracks sometimes failing to go anywhere or flailing lifelessly. The fade-out outro of “Appalachain II” serves as a good example: it feels pointless.

This shouldn’t discourage anyone from checking out this incredibly unique and interesting album, but it can be said that it comprises of an A+ moment, some A’s and a handful of B/C grade tracks. For it’s hurried production process (the bandcamp page describes a manic creation, distortion and mixing of tracks), Pattern Language is rather sophisticated. Not quite a wonder colour but a long way off a muddy brown, despite the album cover.



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user ratings (4)
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3.1
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Comments:Add a Comment 
StrangerofSorts
Contributing Reviewer
February 12th 2013


2719 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

http://www.muzikdizcovery.com

hai

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
February 12th 2013


4458 Comments


Good review, Johnny. I know of these guys, but I can't say I'm all that familiar with their music.

Anyway, POS.

StrangerofSorts
Contributing Reviewer
February 12th 2013


2719 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks, man. I'd never come across them before last week when this was released, but from this album I reckon it's worth looking at their old stuff.

Eclecticist
February 12th 2013


3863 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Their debut was the fucking bomb! But for some reason they dropped the use of real instruments and have decided to be this all electronic group that just sequences shit and it gets irritating after a couple of tracks.

StrangerofSorts
Contributing Reviewer
February 12th 2013


2719 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I don't know, I quite like the sound they're going for but think they could have done it a little better. I'll give the debut a spin anyhow and see if that changes this.



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