AL-90
CODE​-915913


5.0
classic

Review

by Chortles USER (18 Reviews)
June 11th, 2018 | 37 replies


Release Date: 02/25/2015 | Tracklist


AL-90’s Code-915913 is one of secret delights, or perhaps just overt sorrows – I can’t quite figure out which it is. Not that those are mutually exclusive emotions, and the ambiguity between them seems more than deliberate here – like other “outsider” contemporaries, AL-90 is content with skirting the discernible, laying down their obscenely infectious brand of house at every turn, but only under the veil of one elusively lo-fi aesthetic. It feels fully realized rather than simply being a production conceit, though – Code plays out like a quiet reflection on an urban haze of sorts, broadcast from the lonely heights of some upper-story bedroom window, tucked away on a side street somewhere deep in the recesses of the city. And, gentle as it may be, there is a voice that floats down with it – one which permeates the dulled pastel walls and the worn, cobbled roads below; one which whispers its song past the idle chatter and muted foot-traffic of the streets within. A voice faint in volume but unmistakable in presence, not crying out or begging to be heard, but simply asking “…is anyone listening?” There is a story to be told.

Hearing that story actually play out is like trying to recall a memory you never had, one that’s suddenly swept away from your touch the moment it begins to take form. By the time “Melancholia Staroy Pornozvezdy” rolls in, wavering so naturally between its throbbing bass and inconsolable strings, it’s already hard to recall what transpired before and led you there in the first place. In a way, it’s one of Code’s few moments of coherence among the pervasive confusion which surrounds it – radiating grandeur and sorrow in equal strokes, but strung up together in a way you wouldn’t think to question. From there, we drift – into a dance both wistful and joyous (“Radicalnye Tanzi”), to muted stomping grounds (“Samoudovletvoris’ Suka”), until finally reaching Code’s apex in “Smena Stadiy” and “Pandora 9.0,” a stirring pair of downbeat dance tracks set to the distant loom of grey skies above. But for all these disparate moods and the irregular jumps between them, Code is unified by the subdued, soul-infused vocal samples chopped and sprinkled generously throughout, serving to lift us from its sluggishness while also grounding us in our element. And so we nod along to the beat, letting delirious rhythms twirl about in our heads and allowing those expressive vocals entry into our souls.

For a record which might seem so forlorn at times, I would hesitate to define it as such; those samples really do imbue a lot of these tracks with a strange sense of hope. Maybe it just comes down to making an obvious human connection with us, the listener, but I think it goes beyond that. Perhaps the overarching detachment portrayed through Code’s ambivalent tone is a reminder that there’s not only pain in loneliness, in the lives of those relegated to being observers, but that it can also hold its own private joys. A reminder of not only the hidden beauty of our own lives, but of those constantly swirling around us, interacting together in ways we cannot always see; of the frailty of a thousand memories and experiences, past and present, lived and lost. AL-90 looks within to explore these emotions, but only manages to lose us further in the process. There is no eventual resolution. Why should there be? Code rests on its power to inspire intrigue in all its unknown quantities. It doesn’t take long to become fascinated with the same thoughts ourselves, returning time and time again – not to seek clarity, but to find solace in the warm voices washing over the gloom, reminding us to stay the path and relish in its mysterious ways.



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user ratings (28)
Chart.
3.7
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
TheBarber
June 11th 2018


3738 Comments


This is just what I was looking for thank you so much for reviewing this

Digging: Daughters - You Won't Get What You Want

Chortles
June 11th 2018


21280 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

thanks for stopping in!



this album is hard to describe... i've never heard anything quite like it. hopefully i did it some justice~!



melancholia staroy pornozvezdy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hu_E9kSr70M

Digging: Shinichi Atobe - Heat

TVC15
June 11th 2018


9788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The review (and rating) this masterpiece deserves

calmrose
June 12th 2018


3754 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great review, definitely going to check this



song you linked was dope

Digging: Daughters - You Won't Get What You Want

TheSpaceMan
June 12th 2018


11480 Comments


holy smokes i'm sold i bet this is amazing, nice fuck-worrying-about-being-biased-this-is-just-everything-ever-5.0 review

"is like trying to recall a memory you never had" that made me feel really nervous for some reason lol

luci
June 12th 2018


10051 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Damn, wish I wrote this review! Outstanding work Chortles. There's something special about how this album plays with hooks and memory, you communicate that elusive quality so well. This might be my favorite "post-Burial" treatment of vocals in electronic music. Half-remembering an album has never felt so good.

hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I love

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
June 12th 2018


23717 Comments


chortles my dudeeee (:

hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Some of the vocal samples remind me of burial

hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh Lucid already covered that lol. Wasn’t paying attention

hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

haha



ur binary names are getting lengthy

hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yep. if u add a '011' to your name it would translate to a '[' in binary



hal1ax
June 12th 2018


11436 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

rec me some good 2018 house//techno shit

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
June 12th 2018


23717 Comments


Ghost Transportation Service - marginalia

AnimalsAsSummit
June 12th 2018


3493 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is unbelievably sick

Digging: Ryuichi Sakamoto - Sweet Revenge

AnimalsAsSummit
June 12th 2018


3493 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

probably gonna 5 this i can feel it

Chortles
June 12th 2018


21280 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

thank you everyone!! i never really considered the burial comparisons but that probably just comes down to not listening to him a ton. maybe it's time for a revisit.. :thinking:.. the samples are sooo good here urhrg



@space lol, it is kind of scary to think about but i think it creates a nice balance between that unease and the weird comfort and familiarity it beings to create after a few listens... i hope ya dig it. the review didn't really start as that (or even as a 5/5) but the more i listened and gathered my thoughts, the more i realized how much this thing really meant to me. can't ever get it out of my head honestly

Zeneren
June 13th 2018


1041 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

OK I still need to listen to this all the way through

Digging: Eli Keszler - Stadium

Chortles
June 13th 2018


21280 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

yes



also, for a bite sized chunk of al-90, here's a stellar single dropped a few months ago: https://fuselab.bandcamp.com/album/fuse004

theYearis1999
June 13th 2018


32 Comments


The song structures really let this go to an amazing place it wouldn't otherwise go. Each track has major compositional chops.



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