Perturbator
The Uncanny Valley


3.5
great

Review

by ramon. CONTRIBUTOR (47 Reviews)
May 7th, 2016 | 70 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Breathing rust.

It's often with shaky hands the pool of sweat caused by a smattering of nostalgic intricacies is formed on our chairs, mouse mats, and keyboards. The spine-tingling sensation caused by positive deja vu almost never fails to initiate when the first metallic synth makes a jarringly jittery entrance. 22nd-century Tokyo is rife with torment and crippling manipulation, and Perturbator captures this olden look into the future with grimy precision. Even so, the persistent darkness isn't blinding enough to hide all of The Uncanny Valley's missteps. Though the murk does conceal most of them, and the divide between right and wrong becomes fittingly slim.

It is an emphatically stormy start for The Uncanny Valley. "Neo Tokyo" furiously launches forward after a brief, mechanical build up. Undoubtedly the heaviest opener on a Perturbator album, "Neo Tokyo" layers synth upon synth with a constant driving motion. Unfortunately, the intensity and direction of this track are largely lost for the rest of The Uncanny Valley's first half. Proceeding tracks, while still retaining the moodier edge set in "Neo Tokyo", suffer from a lack of variation and intriguing ideas. "Femme Fatale" breaks up the overplayed thumping with gorgeous, rising flow, but is followed up by the weakest song on the record. Even though looming tenebrosity isn't completely abandoned here, "Venger" sounds somewhat out of place on a record so attached to it's sense of brooding identity.

The auditory story-telling during the second half is almost vampiric in nature. This is Neo Tokyo. A diverse, sprawling congregation of the deluded, and the calculating. Acceptance of slippery ideals in distorted, underground governments, and the fight with and against the machine, is all colored in black and white. It is simple, yet extravagant. Perturbator shrewdly highlights the injustice of a world unknown, and it is absolutely beautiful in its twisted nature. A three-part serving of war is thrust upon us in "Diabolus Ex Machina" and the two proceeding tracks through abrasive drum machines and violent atmosphere. Crushing production seamlessly ties together abstract synths and bouncing melodies while distorted basses buzz with ecstasy. Every track draws energy from the last with little remorse. Yet the peak of this metropolitan mountain only chimes in at the eleventh hour.

Perturbator is a well-oiled machine by this point in time. Every release coyly whispers nostalgia in a confidently unapologetic fashion. However, The Uncanny Valley treads upon deeper waters than anything before it, and closes with two reminders of the elliptical corruption masterfully displayed by the album's second half. The constant drive is replaced with quiet; immersion and reflection become central. Though blatant in some (if not all) of its metaphors, the pristine execution of this record is brilliantly slick. However, unsteady, unimaginative beginnings prove that even the most tediously engineered android is susceptible to breathing rust. A press of a button, a roar of an engine, and the beast comes to life. It is monstrous and majestic enough for its sins to be almost forgotten. But only almost.



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user ratings (162)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


2955 Comments


Probably my favourite Perturbator record. It is possibly his least varied in tone, but the second half was brilliant in my opinion. Hope y'all are having a nice day!

LifeFeedsOnLife
May 7th 2016


467 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Fucking called it.... lol. It's a good one as well. Pos'd from me.

Ovrot
May 7th 2016


13304 Comments


so this is synthwave black metal right or have i been lied to

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


2955 Comments


Thanks, Life! Yah, it would be an easy 4.0 if the first half wasn't so stale.

No, Blood Music just really like dark synthwave and its derivatives.

LifeFeedsOnLife
May 7th 2016


467 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's retro-synthwave.. 80's worship type stuff, only black metal in theme occasionally.

Ovrot
May 7th 2016


13304 Comments


i dunno man perturbator is known for their trem riffs and shrieks

LifeFeedsOnLife
May 7th 2016


467 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

'i dunno man perturbator is known for their trem riffs and shrieks'



Nah dude.. You're thinking of Babymetal.

tempest--
May 7th 2016


20632 Comments


pos for reviewing Perturbator gotta jam this asap

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


8876 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Sounds weaker than Dangerous Days, but it's certainly not a bad album by any stretch.

Digging: Ni - Pantophobie

parksungjoon
May 7th 2016


9207 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this is your favourite Perturbator and you only gave it a 3.5?



the fuck you smoking son



guy's brill i bet this album is great

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


8876 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The first half kinda slacks, but the second half more than makes up for it. If you're a Perturbator fan it should be a pretty easy 4.

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


2955 Comments


I wrote a 4.0 review for Vektor's latest but decided I would rather post a 3.5 for an album likely to sit around 4.0, than a 4.0 review for an album currently sitting on a 4.7, 80 rating hype train. I also can't rate in 0.1 increments so don't take 3.5 as a summation of my thoughts. Just read the review; having half the album be considerably worse than the other half isn't going to exactly promote a higher score.

Dangerous Days is probably a stronger record on the whole, but the second half of this was more enticing for me than DD.

CrimsonLies
May 7th 2016


2579 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good review although I clearly enjoyed this album more than you.



Have a pos.

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 7th 2016


2955 Comments


Thanks! I enjoyed the record more than I showed in the review; simply can't objectively give this a score higher than what I did.

LifeFeedsOnLife
May 7th 2016


467 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I know what you mean about not being able to rate in .1 increments from time to time.. It's frustrating, especially for albums like this that i'd totally give a 3.7 if I could, but what's a guy to do? :/

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 8th 2016


2955 Comments


Exactly. This is a 3.7 for me too lol

CrimsonLies
May 8th 2016


2579 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is definitely a hard album to digest, clocking in under 70 minutes. It's also heavily layered compared to his previous works so it's generally less straight forward imo

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 8th 2016


2955 Comments


That's where my issue lies. The second half was considerably harder to digest than the first half, but there was a constant desire to return to the tracks and dig for gold. It was intriguing because of the amount going on, paired with strict vision. First half just felt like his previous work; it's been done before and to many extents, in a better fashion. Loved the album, but I never feel compelled to replay anything outside of "Neo Tokyo" from the first half.

parksungjoon
May 8th 2016


9207 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

crypto bro don't worry it's a good review and i did read it.



i just think this dude's crazy good and so to rate your favourite album by him a mere 3.5 is very weird to me.

ramon.
Contributing Reviewer
May 8th 2016


2955 Comments


I was responding primarily to MarsKid, but thanks for clarifying your point. 3.5 = Great on this website so it doesn't seem like too much of a stretch. The thing is, Perturbator hasn't been releasing music for all that long. The whole dark synthwave thing has only really been getting coverage in the past 4 years or so, and the genre hasn't really had a chance to produce anything at its maximum potential. Dangerous Days sits on a 3.5, I Am The Night sits on a 3.3, and I don't really care much for Terror 404. Note in my previous comments, I said if I could rate in 0.1 increments like the staff, I would give this a 3.7.

The Uncanny Valley has kinda given a little insight as to what the genre CAN be (take the second half as an example), and if Perturbator, Carpenter Brut, or Dan Terminus can release a record that consistently hits that level, I would probably throw a 4.0, or even 4.5! Hopefully that explains a little more as to why I gave it the rating I did. No need to agree with me whatsoever, but if it clears up the waters, my work here is done.



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