RADICAL USER INTERFACES
CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT
Originally printed in Now Then Magazine Issue 91
The momentum of the digital age drives the heartbeat of this futuristic electronic album. Texas is a hot part of the world, known for its cacti and big blue skies, but it’s also known for Dallas, and this is where Cygnus works his wizardry of waveform and arithmetic of arpeggiators. Taking unique sounds, a simple electronic dot on the horizon of silence, he builds it up and slowly makes it part of a new, audible landscape of flowing contour and orientation.
Sweet digital crispness seeps from the beginning bars of the title track, a funky patting of the electro bass and some head-swirling pitch changes snapping us to attention. 'Nexus Telecoms' has a bit more depth and flare. A jumble of tones and beats wash through the intro and produce a stable riff pattern after around 30 seconds. A crescendo of blips and synthetic wobbles splash like waves on the matrix, dowsing us in green lights. A hypnotic feeling gradually escapes from the near-mayhem and sings out the end of the piece like the slowly receding tide, flowing into the aptly titled 'Arcade Killers'.
Final track 'Electronic Slave' has been made into a video by Sheffield creative collective Human. Featuring various uses of the polygon in computer design, it reminds me of when I used to dabble with my Acorn Electron in the early 90s. Already a dated machine, I loved the appeal of getting back to the basic functions of what the hardware was made for.
At only four tracks long, this album is over quickly, but it's deep and rich enough to make it worthwhile. Like a fine whiskey, it's distilled. The padding has been removed but the purpose remains - the kick and the flavour is all that you get.