Nice try, Philippe Simon and Cyril Monnard of Sinn/rd, but did you really think the 4/20/13 release of One-legged tap dancer would escape the sensibilities of an American audience? This isn't stoner music per se, but it's certainly nice to listen to while stoned (I would imagine). The first release of what promises to be a lucrative electronic career, it took Simon and Monnard nearly three years to record this EP, so you know they weren't just recording in the studio.
Sinn/rd's music falls somewhere between the post-rock musings of Do Make Say Think (the album cover does bear an architectural semblance to DMST's Goodbye Enemy Airship The Landlord is Dead) and the artificial textures of European forebears like Kraftwerk and Can. A laptop and a rhythm machine are the primary weapons these fellas wield, but guitar, trumpet and even a cello make appearances. The rhythms are drawn out and take a while to get creative, or rather it takes a while for the creativity to hit you. The modulation is sometimes so subtle you won't notice a change in sound (like in the exploratorium jazz of "Scar") and sometimes you can see the structural mutations from a mile away (the doomed instrumental hip-hop piece "The Rhythmace" that manages to be the best track despite being the most predictable).
The EP only numbers four tracks but it's more than 25 minutes long. Plenty of time for Sinn/rd to market their ideas and change up their sound. Distant shuffling and buggy tapping ushers in acoustic murmurings on "Pem-x" that slowly build into crests of white noise breaking over each other. Industrial foreboding looms in the distance during the first half of closer "The Fuzzin'E" and then gets in your face with warped synthesizers, warbling guitar and mechanical rhythms.
Real intensity lurks around the corners of the songs and while Sinn/rd sometimes confront it they are more content to let it be. The music sometimes succumbs to this passive-aggressive stance and yet that'll probably be Sinn/rd's biggest strength as they explore their musical possibilities and find their audience. But should safety overcome aesthetic? They're already good at what they do, making long, weird electronic instrumentals, so I think they should just fully embrace the pot and go all out. None of this business about taking years to make less than a half-hour of music, though.
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