Slow Focus Review

artist: Fuck Buttons date: 07/19/2013 category: compact discs
Fuck Buttons: Slow Focus
Released: Jul 22, 2013
Genre: Electronic, Noise, Drone, Post-Rock
Label: ATP/R
Number Of Tracks: 7
No guitars, just noise and destruction from the UK's electronic doombringers.
 Sound: 8
 Lyrics: 8
 Overall Impression: 8
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review (1) 34 comments vote for this album:
overall: 8
Slow Focus Reviewed by: UG Team, on july 19, 2013
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: Shock! Horror! Outrage! This is electronic music, why are UG reviewing this? I thought this was supposed to be Ultimate Guitar, not Ultimate Drone! Well, if it helps I could tell you that Fuck Buttons write all of their songs on a Dimebag signature Razorback before they translate them to synths and sine waves. But I'd be lying. What this British duo undoubtedly are is challenging. Poisoning the chalice of dance music's more esoteric forms with noise and drone, their racket is as aggressive, heavy and apocalyptic as any guitar music you'd care to name. The idea of the "difficult second album" is put into perspective when the press treat your debut as the superlative end of all things, but second LP "Tarot Sport" went straight back on the offensive and, even after a four year break, new album "Slow Focus" doesn't seem to be any more forgiving. Dense, dark bass synths swarm as "Brainfreeze" grows and expands from a base of tribal drums and the repetition is tough. Whilst "Sentients" is a vocoded nightmare and "The Red Wing"'s bass riff runs black to the core, their orchestrations have grace, poise and a great deal of substance. No matter how tall the tower of sound grows, how blistering the noise becomes, they never lose sight of the initial spark - someone humming a tune, striking a drum or playing a chord on the keyboard. That is their greatest strength, and their strongest link to guitar music via post-rock. You can hear Mogwai's curiosity beneath the roaring waves of "Stalker," the digital catharsis of 65daysofstatic sounding through the rubble as "Hidden XS" dismantles the first six tracks and brings about the end of the album with emotional, musical and pyrotechnic closure. These last two tracks, which span over twenty minutes, will give newcomers an idea of what electronic music can do: evolve and mutate over long periods, swapping instant gratification for the feeling of having journeyed, and having changed with the music along the way. // 8

Lyrics: There are no words, only noises. // 8

Overall Impression: Fuck Buttons are a wonderfully immersive listen. "Slow Focus" takes their previous constructions and forces them under hot water, leaving the chaos awash with reverb across extended trances. It is formidable, imposing but far from impenetrable. Give it a chance and it may surprise you; give in and it will sweep you away. If the restraints and repetitions of rock and metal are starting to leave you cold then introducing something like this to your diet may well be what keeps you going this summer.

// 8

- Duncan Geddes (c) 2013

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