Thursday, December 3, 2015

Secular Posthumanism

True to its impulsive nature EVENIFUDONTBELIEVEME is a moment-based music, not a reflexive music. It’s not for nothing that the track titled “4Eva” is only two minutes long, a vocoder enunciation of its title looped through the entire duration. EVENIFUDONTBELIEVEME’s fullness, perhaps its most defining quality, doesn’t allow any existential dilemma to permeate in its midst, which may seem to headier types a tad anti-intellectual. Indeed, Rustie’s stadium ambitions ride parallax to a recent history ripe with douchery. As dubstep crossed over into the mainstream in the years following the purple sound, a wind-up menagerie of anonymous tinkerers have concocted tracks whose core audience has been a salivating series of alphas eternally “waiting for the drop”. When Rustie composes himself in this manner, as he does on in the accelerated drum roll crescendos of nearly every track of his latest, one can see him creating an altar of the self on the dancefloor, arms raised in faux messiah pose like Tiesto, Deadmau5, or Zach Effron in that ill-fated EDM movie. 

As the skittering drums tense up on intro to “Big Catzz”, one could even be forgiven for thinking that the album was being interrupted by a YouTube trailer for the next Michael Bay thriller. It’s only when the alien phasing on those sinewaves bursts in that you realize this is not the spectacle society itself, but its substitute, something that takes the exhilaration those dizzying edits are supposed to reproduce and actually attempts to introduce it. It’s less prescriptive medicine and more like getting high, less mandatory fun than elective recreation. 

Part of what distinguishes rave music from indie is the difference between community music and personal music, which has long been what much of the indie community resents about dance music, the way it broadly reconciles for an audience rather than dismisses its larger audience in favor of individuation. In the culture wars, it’s clear the latter has won, with multiple platforms bragging about how personalized their selections are, perfect for tuning out the environment in earbud isolation. Rustie, for better or worse, screams out how rad it is from every orifice and begs the whole club to synch to this perpetuity in unison.

This is no doubt extreme music, no less so than Merzbow or Napalm Death, but just facing in the direction of euphoria. Rustie’s recent admission that he falls asleep to happy hardcore music seems to confirm this. So, the question is how many pixie sticks can you eat before you puke? How amped can you get before you’re just depleted? Is hi-end the new bass? How does it feel to live inside a Lisa Frank coloring book?

- from my review of Rustie's EVENIFUDONTBELIEVE

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