Perturbator, New Model – Album Review

The Synthwave movement is making serious waves right now, and few feature on the playlists of the 80’s inspired electronica more than James Kent, aka Perturbator. With his new EP ‘New Model’ receiving a physical release in late October, resident Synth-head Matt Lambourne takes us on a night ride out of the reassuring light tones of Synthwave, into the dark and murky waters of hard-electronica.

For me, Synthwave has been the music genre that I’ve spent much of my life searching for. The happy medium between Metal and the 80’s synth music that I grew up enjoying as a kid. Perturbator has been on the forefront of this movement for several years, and his star is truly rising as the general public’s appetite for all things 80’s and electronic appears to have no signs of abating, largely in thanks to shows like Stranger Things, whose music is a high note of generally accepted brilliance.

“Electronic Music for Metal fans” is a quote that I’ve recalled from a member of Facebook’s ‘Synthwave Vinyl collectors group’, and whilst that over-simplifies the genre and its development, he couldn’t have been more right with the intention. Perturbator himself has been on quite a journey, from the pop-tastic light tones of the ‘Sexualizer’ EP, to the experimental and genre-defining album ‘Dangerous Days’, we now land at an unexplored crossroads with ‘New Model’.

Heavily inspired by futuristic dystopia, a world dependent on machinery, and a suppressed distaste for modern pop-culture, ‘New Model’ distances itself from Synthwave to create something new entirely. James Kent cuts the picture of a man who is angry and deeply disturbed with how modern humanity finds itself reliant on technology and is almost sending to us the soundtrack to mankind’s self destruction.

Whether it is the Terminator-esque deathmarch anthem of ‘Tactical Precision Disarray’, or the disturbingly psychotic love anthem in ‘Vantablack’, ‘New Model’ explores a range of human emotion in an almost emotionless society.

The roots of this record are clear to see, deeply entrenched with inspiration from the music scores of John Carpenter, fused together with Kent’s own individual pain, ‘New Model’ is the most personally probing of Pertubator‘s works to date; and I dare say, it’s his best. This EP definitely isn’t for everyone. Those who enjoy the lighter tones of his earlier work will find little solace here. But for fans of aggressive, dark and somewhat disturbing electronica, this EP will be provide a liberating sense of relief from the mass-produced electronic music of today.

Retro-Futurism may have many years of novelty remaining, but can it survive a Weapon of Mass-Destruction fired from within its own walls? Perturbator‘s ‘New Model’ tears down the walls and rips the rule book apart in what may well be a polarising EP of truly epic proportions. We implore that you check it out at your earliest opportunity and be part of this scene before it becomes too cool to bear.

Track of choice – Vantablack

New Model is available to stream now from iTunes and you can pre-order a physical release on CD & Vinyl to be distributed via Blood Music on October 20th.

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