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The Future's Void
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City Slang is excited to announce the release date and album details for the forthcoming LP from EMA, 'The Future's Void',the album will be released throughout Europe by City Slang on April 7th. The follow-up to her acclaimed 2011 LP, 'Past Life Martyred Saints' 'The Future's Void' was written by Erika M. Anderson, recorded in Portland, Oregon, and produced by Erika and Leif Shackelford.
EMA recently told NME that the album was influenced by, among other things, NiN demos, the heavier side of early K Records, and William Gibson's Neuromancer, and that the album looks at the digital commodification of our online lives. She says, 'I gravitate toward hooks and melodies, and in some ways the structure of these songs are my poppiest yet, while noting that the jarring production includes a lot of first takes and spontaneously-recorded ambient sounds 'to keep the songs from sounding like advertisements'
Last month the first single 'Satellites' was released to raves, garnering 'Best New Track' from Pitchfork, who said, 'Its discontent composed to Carl Sagan proportion, and it s easily the most bracing thing yet from an artist already more bracing than most' Spin said,'it's a rumbling mammoth that feeds off canned, clapping percussion and waves of static feedback' while Stereogum noted, 'anxiety this ferocious is a timeless thing'
Top customer reviews
Last time we saw the Portland based musician formally known as Erika M Anderson, she was grinning coyly in the direction of a sell out audience at the Great Escape in 2011. The set was in support of her debut album Past Life Martyred Saints. Of the same year, it offers a loved albeit underground homage to the soundboard. Wrapping fairy lights around her (momentarily) brunette head and idly kicking shards of glitter ball away from her exit, it seemed to be an iconic moment in her career. Not so. The velocity at which this artist currently speeds makes such a triumph seem as insignificant as cornflakes. EMA has got the world in her pocket and on The Future’s Void, she’s shaking it up.
In a way, this album is groundbreaking because it addresses previous flaws. Anderson was half way to sonic heaven on her debut, hawking over spacious synth and handclaps in a way only previously associated with devil worshipping. In 2014 she fills in the blanks, literally, with stellar composition and a bunch of killer hooks. For example, few tracks on The Future’s Void are comparable to the unholy chaos of “Breakfast” or the slacker drawl of “Butterfly Knife”. Fans of EMA’s experimental side needn’t fear for the sanctity of their saviour. The Future’s Void is far from commercial; it just makes a lot more sense.
The resulting sensation is like being swept off your feet and dangled in the air, while some celestial being squawks at you and hits the nearest clank-y thing. Standout tracks change with every listen, but “Cthulu” proves particular effective in its ambition to make me resemble a mad woman coming out of hibernation for the first time in three years. That’s since the release of Past Life Martyred Saints, in case you were counting. Elsewhere singles “So Blonde”, “Satellites” and “3Jane” don’t drop the ball for a minute, whooping and whacking merry hell out of sound techniques while also sticking a middle finger up in the direction of mediocrity. It’s never too much, and there’s always more to come.
The biggest achievement however, comes at the end of The Future’s Void. By the time “Solace” and “Dead Celebrity” enter the room, you realise you’re listening to something that’s… y’know… pretty. There’s fragility to EMA’s voice and she’s not afraid to show it, but more poignantly, the album connects with its listener. It infects the skin and does funny things to the brain, but it also cuddles the heart. It’s a heart-warming sensation regardless of the level of innovation and musical prowess at play. All combined, The Future’s Void is totally, totally essential. Play it loud.
Read more reviews like this one at http://www.drunkenwerewolf.com
Erika M. Anderson on her 20111 album 'Past Life Martyred Saints'
and it's good to know that she hasn't drifted too far from her default
position of creating sombre sit-up-and-listen sepulchral anthems. There is
more than enough room in the World for one more talented night creature.
I, for one, am glad about this. Darkness definitely becomes her.
This collection of ten new songs finds Ms Anderson in fine voice.
It is a dramatic full-bodied instrument with the capacity to both
warm and chill the blood in our veins in equal measure.
From the grinding opening urban hymn 'So Blonde', through the more
gentle and surprisingly touching '3 Jane' and '100 Years'; to far
sterner stuff in the shape of numbers like 'Cthulu' and 'Neuromancer',
she never loses her grip on this singularly affecting sonic vision.
'The Future's Void' doesn't deliver too many smiley moments but as
an effort in sustained melancholy the album takes a lot of beating.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Erika M. Anderson (EMA) taps into my post-millennium tension. The music is unsettling and jarring juxtaposed with beautiful, soothing synths and vocals. "I feel I blew my soul out across he interwebs," she sings on 3Jane, and she is afraid she will never get back to herself. There is life and then internet life and who you are at any given time is slippery at best. We now have the ability to move from one persona to the next at a whim. Easy to lose oneself.
Satellites, the album opener, begins with an annoying static that soon blends in with a synth chord and hand claps to become a beat. Ugliness into beauty, and this happens throughout the album. The listener is drawn into the noise and then soothed. Or the opposite occurs. A relaxed, soft song is smacked to life with squeals of machine noise, or better, Erika's vocal chord shredding scream as in So Blonde, a beautiful little pop song Courtney Love would have killed to have written.
The album cover and title, The Future's Void, is very telling. We can not see EMA's face and she is looking into a view finder, and we can't see what she's looking at either. Nor can she see us, so where does leave human interaction in this strange new world? What can we really know about one another?
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND this album. I like it better than Past Life Martyred Saints, which was also brilliant, so that's saying a lot.
This is not that. This really does seem to get better every time. Huge leaps and bounds better, which is something because even the first listen was awesome. I mean, wow! From beginning to end, this album is amazing, and it keeps getting more so.
So get out your best headphones/earbuds/loudspeakers. This will go from loud crashing of synth in “Satellites” (oh god the synth!) to the soft, timely fatalism of “100 Years”. It makes them work but you will like it. Or love it. It’s that good. Music that creeps into your soul.
I had never heard of EMA until Wired had a small piece about a new video, “Satellites”, done all DIY with an Oculus and Kinect and a gritty present juxtaposed with 80s past. I clicked. It was instantly one of my favorite songs. Ever. A pre-order just seemed the right move and now that the album has dropped I can’t stop listening to it over and over and over. The music, the lyrics, the double meanings and it just keeps getting… better.
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