SCUTOPUS - Scutopus Pegasus Unicorn Tiger

Scutopus - Scutopus Pegasus Unicorn Tiger

9 songs
77:19 minutes
***** ****


Feeding was one of the most accessible CDs I have ever come across, so imagine by apprehension when I was faced with Scutopus' new album Scutopus Pegasus Unicorn Tiger. But the info sheet and also the information available on the artist's homepage explained that the previous output was extreme indeed, and that the new album should be considered to be of the techno genre.

So far, so good. As long as you don't expect happy hardcore house music, you can read on this review. SPUT is not your typical techno album, and it being a limited release of only 100 CD-Rs, you would think it would not be music for the masses. But still, what you get to hear on this nearly 80 minutes long release is very listenable indeed, once you get the feeling for the chilling beats. With two thirds of the songs ranging between seven and ten minutes, and Flirt even crossing the twenty minutes border, you are in for some very sprawling music that takes its intensity from minimalism and repetition, without hardly every sounding boring. If at first you feel alienated by the clinical machine drums that are only backed by chilly keyboard sounds, you will have to let yourself become immersed in Scutopus' aural universe, and once you reach the sixth song Captain, you will be amazed by the simple yet effective beauty of the compositions.

SPUT is no Feeding, fortunately. It is an electronic album that owes as much to experimental techno (Aphex Twin, Autechre) as to the founding fathers of electronic music (Klaus Schulze, Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk), yet creating a universe of its own, making you feel like sitting in a grubby nightclub somewhere in the outskirts of the solar system, probably on one of the lesser moons of Jupiter or Saturn, drinking fluorescent green drinks after a hard day of mining ice on your little satellite. So yes, it is all very futuristic sounding, unlike most things you will come across on your forays through the electronic underground.

And maybe it's just me, but SPUT seems to get better and better the longer I listen to it, so that the long Flirt comes as the highlight of the album. The concluding short Purr hints at the artist's more experimental side, with lots of drones and hardly any rhythm at all, but doesn't hide the fact that the preceding 74 minutes offer excellent rhythmical and, above all, listenable music.

When it was more than understandable that Feeding was only released in a 50 CD-R edition, I suspect that SPUT will certainly find more than 100 admirers, as it is a treat for friends of experimental electronics that like minimalism as well as decent melodies. Be sure to check out the artist's homepage where you can download excerpts of this album, plus much of the back catalogue in its entirety. Scutopus has many different faces, and goes from grating to the absolutely inventive pleasing, with SPUT being his best effort yet.

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