Patten
ESTOILE NAIANT


4.0
excellent

Review

by hyperi0n STAFF
February 19th, 2014 | 42 replies


Release Date: 02/24/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Idm rebirth.

It could easily be argued that the trajectory of all art is cyclical. Not so much cyclical in that it perpetually returns to a specific point, but progressively cyclical, a snowballing of ideologies and approaches that are absorbed into the rotating sphere of influence that is constantly refreshed, impacted, and expanded upon as it progresses along a linear path. Well, at least it was that way for a very long time, when both memory and artistic expression progressed along a linear path as well.

Art, and more specifically music, now exists in a climate where the figurative snowball of influence has become saturated to the point of collapsing in upon itself, allowing for formless access to ideas and practices that directly challenge the chronological linearity of time as history remembers it. This is the age of information, where access to the wealth of human knowledge and experience is a little less than a few pushes of a button away. As a result, the artistic landscape has become inundated with an infatuation with anachronism, a rather paradoxical clashing of ideas and experiences that perhaps were never supposed to meet. Where this saturation of information could have been met with stubborn opposition in favor of blind progress, it has been almost uniformly welcomed and exploited in ways that are not simply giving the past new life, but synthesizing entirely new narratives from the junk of history.

ESTOILE NAIANT, patten's fourth full-length and the first to be released by the legendary Warp records, exists directly at the center of this virginal sonic landscape. Throwback and “retro” artists have existed for quite a long time, certainly before it became so easy to access information, but this was more or less a response to the technological limitations of physical media. It was easier to copy a style and get away with formal theft when there was less of a chance of someone hearing the source of inspiration, which is a practice that is slowly being obliterated by information technology. ESTOILE NAIANT almost seems like a direct response to this perspective, the idea that the past is constant and can only be emulated, not altered. While everything about patten's newest record sounds old, it sounds old in a way that is entirely intangible, almost as if it were plucked out of an alternate history in a timeline that never happened.

ESTOILE NAIANT is a pulsing, rotating, undulating mess of unintelligible sound bits, indecipherable samples, washed out synth pads, and contradictory rhythmic patterns that pour from the speakers in a deluge of post-modernity. This contextual labyrinth of noise functions on both visceral and cerebral levels, nostalgic and confounding all at once. Whether it's the gate modulated LFO pads on a track like Drift that sound like a pop song you wish you heard on the radio in 1986, or the distant rhythmic pulsing of Pathways punctuated by splashes of eerily familiar vocal samples, ESTOILE NAIANT succeeds in simultaneously sounding both old and new, a purposeful confounding of the memories that serve as the basis for context. It is a deliberate exploitation of the expressionistic power of sound as a tool for not only invoking memory, but changing it and reimagining it in ways that directly subvert the consistency of time.

It's also interesting to consider that this kind of repurposing of sound has found such a secure home in the world of electronic music, because, other than in reference to itself, electronic music doesn't have a comparatively extensive lineage from which to pull ideas, and what ideas it does derive from are certainly without context. Perhaps that is also why ESTOILE NAIANT fits so comfortably in the equally insubstantial genre of IDM, if for no other reason than the fact that IDM has never actually had a sound and can only generally be lumped together by the idea that it is “dance music that you aren't supposed to dance to”. It seems only fitting that a record that purposefully eschews context in favor of the alluring pull of insubstantiality would find a home in a genre that is equally insubstantial in terms of musical cannon.

Conservatism is inherently a self-defeating ideology, and patten's ESTOILE NAIANT is a confident reminder that even though the past is immutable, it is certainly not perfect in its intangibility. In the interest of not making broad claims that are too general for the scope of their ideological boundaries, it is safe to say that what patten has done with ESTOILE NAIANT is provide an example by which the standard of reinvention can be measured. Proving that the past is more intimately a part of the present than anyone wishes to admit, ESTOILE NAIANT is an invigorating, perplexing journey through the post-modern contextual climate of the information age that has synthesized an almost completely new narrative for the future generation of music, one that is both progressive and retrospective all at once.



Recent reviews by this author
Charlatan Local AgentM. Geddes Gengras Ishi
Lone Reality TestingPlaid Reachy Prints
Dead Congregation Promulgation of the FallSquarepusher Music For Robots
user ratings (11)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
February 18th 2014


18487 Comments


album is up for stream on patten's official site. go to the link, click on the snowflake, and then click on STREAM: http://www.patttten.com/

also here are two videos for two of the best tracks on the album

Drift: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqt21LtJx6o

Agen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uyB8Q74vSvU

Digging: Recondite - Caldera/DRGN 2

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
February 18th 2014


15737 Comments


I deleted my comment cuz it came off way more priggish than intended. I just recognized a lot of the themes (and occasionally a phrasing) that were in my piece.

Digging: Ricky Eat Acid - Three Love Songs

Keyblade
February 19th 2014


14853 Comments


Need to czech, keep em coming dawg

Digging: Strawberry Switchblade - Strawberry Switchblade

Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
February 19th 2014


18487 Comments


yeah dude i gotcha haha

i started working on this review before you posted the macintosh review but i think its cool that were both kind of on the same page with things.

MO
February 19th 2014


18687 Comments


"Art, and more specifically music, now exists in a climate where the figurative snowball of influence has become saturated to the point of collapsing in upon itself"

nice

good review man m/

Eloriaz
February 19th 2014


694 Comments


I love your writing, especially when you describe the music. Great job =)

Will check this out. I need more IDM in my life (!)

Digging: Simian Mobile Disco - Whorl

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
February 19th 2014


31173 Comments


Haven't really had a chance to sink into this too much yet, but I don't think it knocks out GLAQJO XAACSO. Still solid though

Digging: LV and Joshua Idehen - Islands

TheBarber
February 19th 2014


1963 Comments


Loving Drift, I'll be sure to check this out

Digging: Animal Collective - Centipede Hz

Brostep
Staff Reviewer
February 19th 2014


3450 Comments


you should just make the summary the first sentence to fuck with people. or even better the "capacity of human intelligence" line

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
February 19th 2014


15737 Comments


i started working on this review before you posted the macintosh review but i think its cool that were both kind of on the same page with things.


agreed!

robin
Emeritus
February 19th 2014


4248 Comments


saw this dude support avey tare in brighton, he was awesome. will read this review momentarily : )

Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
February 19th 2014


18487 Comments


I don't think it knocks out GLAQJO XAACSO. Still solid though


i think theyre albums that are opposing perspectives of the same idea. while GLAQJO is more dense and beat oriented this one is exploring a lighter, almost poppier side to that same approach and i think both work equally well.

MaskAtTheMasquerade
February 19th 2014


2887 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This dude is crazy

Softer and Key Embedded are ***UNGHH***

sniper
February 19th 2014


19050 Comments


nice

kingsoby1
Emeritus
February 19th 2014


4950 Comments


"Haven't really had a chance to sink into this too much yet, but I don't think it knocks out GLAQJO XAACSO. Still solid though" man this must be amazing will check

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
February 20th 2014


4507 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"Where this saturation of information could have been met with stubborn opposition in favor of blind progress it has been almost uniformly..."

I'd put a comma in-between "progress" and "it", makes the sentence flow better

"It's also interesting to consider that this kind of repurposing of sound as found such a secure"

I think "as" is suppose to be "has" here, probably just a typo

I had no idea patten got signed to Warp, and with the way you describe this record (plus that juicy recommended section) I gotcha check this out. I really like what you said at the beginning about the snowball effect of influences producers like this inject into their music, that's really great. Really liked the review overall, and I'm hoping the only reason this hasn't been featured yet is because it hasn't been OFFICIALLY released?

Hyperion1001
Staff Reviewer
February 20th 2014


18487 Comments


good catches, hate missing small things like that

and yeah it comes out officially on the 24th but its streaming now

MisterTornado
Contributing Reviewer
February 20th 2014


4507 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Me too, why I wanted to mention them for such an eloquent review ;)

LordePots
February 20th 2014


6631 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

need need need this nice review

Digging: Just Friends - Avalanche

hiyabootchie
February 20th 2014


350 Comments


From the clips I have heard Patten sounds alittle like Oneothrix and Flying Lotus. Are those fair comparisons? Great review Hyp, definitley will be checking this out in full.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy