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Hyboid - Aliens Ate My Synthesizer!


Astro Chicken

Hyboid aka Sebastian Hübert understands the underlying principle of great pop music - make the listener want more. At just over 24 minutes long, this mini-LP on his own Astro Chicken label has all the right ingredients : cracking chord progressions, melodies, bridges and often all crammed into songs less than 2 minutes long. Unlike so much electronic music, which can often drag out one riff for over 7 minutes, Hübert gives you a scintilla to cherish and the richness of his melodic constructs makes you urge the tracks to go on forever, reaching for the tone arm time and time again.

Sound-wise, Hübert’s aesthetic is close to the modern electronic disco sound of labels such as Aube mixed with the rich heritage of motorik from his native Dusseldorf. The faint reverb and echo recalls the spooky escapism of 50’s UFO movies, but with such titles as “Ou Est Klaus Nomi” it is hard to get away from the similarity of his music to Danny Wolfers. The grimy, subterranean sleaze of “Multiple Personality Disorder” only helps to further that association. However there is a lightness to Hübert’s songs that marks him out from others - like Sebastian Faber, the sophistication of his melodies elevates him out from the 4 note limit that contemporaries in this genre often find hard to escape from.

It’s not all sparky pop though. The gruesomely titled “Dr Dabic’s Pain Amplifier” is a prime example of raw, demented electro that finishes with a subtle climax. A theremin-sounding synth dominates the smooth “Orgontherapie” and in “Trip to NGC891” Hübert’s melodic gifts come to the fore - the manic progression throughout seems like a breath of fresh air at a time when rhythm has taken over. Similarly “Rubber Cell Disco” lurks on the edge of the dancefloor with its dark, uncertain attitude.

Aliens Ate My Synthesizer! doesn’t have a weak track - even the one minute intro and outro soar - and if you’re a fan of anything related to the current scene coming out of Germany or Holland, then this album is essential. Astro Chicken are going to be a label to look out for in the future.

Toby Frith

Reader Comments (1)

Downloaded Hyboid's full length "Aliens Ate My Sythesizer" from Juno, and man is it good - all of it!
"Multiple Personality Disorder" is my favorite, to be followed by Hyboid's "Vogon Poetry" (I first heard them on Hyboid's DJ set for, and those particular tracks stuck with me). Overwhelming glee bursting from "MPDisorder" with it's progressive 7-minute half & half structure, and oh so colorful build all the way to a vibrant alien-robotic bliss of an ending. :)
Appreciate this review! Agreed!

January 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTrinoTEXAS

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