Latvian producer W3C, taking his moniker from the acronym for the World Wide Web Consortium, affords oversight to the totality of the Internet comparable to his namesake standards organization. And where the latter concerns itself with education, outreach and software development, the former is a pastiche and collage savant – using online connectivity and access to wrangle all strains of electronic music and collide their respective particles into an unrecognizable, yet eerily inviting sonic edifices.
Debuting in style, earlier this year, with the vinyl-only “Atmospheric Entry” EP, via Pinch’s Tectonic-side-venture Cold Recordings, W3C now joins the Infinite Machine family with “State Of Absolute Alienation”, on 12” and digital.
Opener “Ascension (Intro)” does what it says on the tin – it stands as an apt overture to the proceedings herein, leaning on harsh, bass-heavy noise bursts before sprinkling in grime decorations and ascendant, reverb-drenched, hollow-synth contrapuntal melody that very much anchors the record into the now, referencing the likes of instrumental grime revivalists such as Dark0, Murlo or Slackk.
“Xenotrack” then shifts gears into what sounds like an inspired take on the psytrance of yesteryear, only slower, steadier… A degraded, alien morphology supporting a nonetheless “club” grammar - making the title, yet again, quite self-explanatory.
…Which rings true a third time for “Bot-o’-War”, a raucous industrial epic which evokes a combat deployment scene in a mecha-centric direct-to-video feature, wherein the subtle naval theming of the title is aurally transcribed into the suffocating, submerged sound design of the latter half.
On the flip, “Short Circuit” (the grimiest of the lot), an unintuitive blend of Mumdance doing his thing, a run-of-the-mill “Ice Rink” homage and a trap lead that could turn heads at a GHE20G0TH1K party, somehow works.
Finally, “Invasion”, replete with sci-fi-blockbuster-trailer aesthetics, sounds like if Two Steps from Hell remixed a mash-up of individually much subtler cuts from Pan Sonic and Gatekeeper, respectively.
Absolute alienation indeed.