Favorite

STS9: Ad Explorata (1320) 

It may seem odd for a mostly instrumental band to define themselves in political terms, but STS9 have strived to push beyond clichés since their not-terribly impressive start as an electro-jam band.

Born as Sound Tribe Sector 9, the politics- and keyboards-heavy quintet quickly built a loyal following by touring ceaselessly. Meanwhile, their studio efforts have turned a breakbeat-and-jazz template into sonic explorations of both analog and digital sounds, looped and sampled to interesting effect. Ad Explorata hardly pushes the edges serrated so gorgeously on 2008's Peaceblaster, but there are some STS9 mainstays that never disappoint.

Leaving their radical-speech sampling behind, the first two-thirds of the new disc seems paused in motion on "cinematic soundtrack" mode. The understated keyboards and atmospherics of "Phoneme," "Heavy" and "Looking Back on Earth" thumb through programmed-sounding live drums with no shortage of ideas.

When stuck in such lightweight ruts, the band can come across like sonic wallpaper. Thankfully, by "Re: Stereo," rump-shaking (the band's live forte) is re-introduced, as the standard power pop bass line jiggles joyfully below the squiggles of electro-trickery, heavy Moogs and romantic keys.

Look for the atmospherics to be heavy at the Rialto, but bring your rug cutters, too, 'cause it should be hard for STS9 to stay in movie-soundtrack mode for too long.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Facebook Recommendations

Latest in Rhythm & Views

  • Rhythm & Views

    American Monoxide “In Flight Mode” (People In A Position To Know)
    • Dec 18, 2014
  • Rhythm & Views

    Wight Lhite “Beyond the Satellites” (Paisley Shirt Records)
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Love is the Only Truth

    Rapper, poet Ezra Letra gets to the heart of his work, words and hip-hop
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • Music Counts

    Friends of Nowhere Man and a Whiskey Girl celebrate their music with a benefit for the Lupus Foundation
    • Dec 4, 2014
  • More »

Facebook Activity

Tucson Weekly on Facebook

© 2014 Tucson Weekly | 3725 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation