Casual EDM fans be forewarned–the tracks you’re about to listen might shock, confuse and amaze you. I’m of course referring to the album AMOK, by Thom Yorke-fronted supergroup Atoms For Peace, which comes out February 24th on XL Recordings. The 9-track debut is a blistering whirlwind of intelligent dance music; a tantalizing ride of off-timed, odd sounding percussion, buzzing low end, and ethereal vocals. AMOK will leave you bruised, battered, confused, and in a different state of mind thanks to Yorke and AFP collaborators Flea and Nigel Godrich of Ultraista, among others. It’s even rumored that Burial had a hand in the album’s production.
You can stream the entire album before it comes out via AFP’s website (which also includes a super cool visualizer).
The beauty of AMOK rests in the created tension and feeling of unease it leaves in the listener. Weird sounds are panned and littered constantly, in the same fashion that binaural beats (for those who are familiar) rapidly scatter a series of low frequency clicks and pops into your ears, producing lucidity and meditative states. This album should be taken as a whole, as its mind melting rhythms are too beautifully disheveled to pick apart tracks individually.
One stand out on the album is Default, which meshes the aforementioned percussion-scattering, blistering synth work, and Yorke’s ghostly hooks. Stuck Together Pieces features a harmoniously sequenced palette of guitar riffs with the words “You don’t get away, You don’t get away so easily” muttered throughout. Reverse Running is undoubtedly the work, or at least influence, of Burial, with a heavy swing on the off-timed drums. AMOK will for sure be getting nods for best album of 2013.
The entirety of AMOK can be streamed here via the Atoms For Peace website.