Missed Music

Music you didn’t know you needed…until now.

A catchy blend of Rock and Electronica from A.I.

A.I. is a trio out of L.A. (featuring brothers Zack and Nick Young) that plays a 50/50 blend of Rock and Electronica called Electroclash. They released their self-titled debut in 2002. Artificial Intelligence was produced by Nine Inch Nails drummer Chris Vrenna and featured keyboardist Pablo Manzarek, son of The Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek (Thanks, Wikipedia!).

The cover art is very original.

The cover art is very original.

For me, this album is all about the sound. I can hear half a dozen influences plainly all over the album. For example, the occasional Rock bridge makes it evident they spent a lot of time listening to Jane’s Addiction. Now, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s hard to come up with something new. In fact, some would say there’s nothing new under the sun. Everything is derivative of something else. It’s how you use and combine the familiar elements that makes for a good sound. That’s what I like about A.I. They aren’t striking west into the wilderness, but they are good songwriters working at the edges of two genres.

I have 5 tracks from this disc on my iPod and while I don’t sit around listening to them with headphones, I do enjoy them whenever the come on.

  • One Man’s War – The verses of this song sound like Lenny Kravitz but the chorus sounds like Saliva. The whole thing has more of a techno feel than either, though, because of the buzzing keyboards.
  • Laughter – This one could almost be a song from Perry Ferrel’s Songs Yet to Be Sung. There are only a dozen words in this song, so it’s not particularly deep, but it is a rocking groove.
  • Forever – The ska-inspired feel of this song is rendered a little Poppier by the wispy keyboard line and synthesized percussion.
  • Danger – For a song called “Danger,” it has an airy and playful feel. This track is typical of A.I., though, with distorted Rock guitar, bouncy keyboard, and a pleasant Pop vocal line.
  • Where We Go – They slow things down a bit on this one and actually use an acoustic piano sound, instead of a synthesizer. This sounds more uniquely theirs than a lot of the tracks on this disc.

They released another album, Sex and Robots, in 2007 with a new keyboardist who has remained with the band. I haven’t heard it yet, but I may check it out. I will be interested to see if they have developed more of their own voice.



July 15, 2009 - Posted by | Electronica, Popular, Rock

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