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Radio Dystopia: Beyond The Radar

Beyond The Radar is the mostly electronic debut by Kevin Bottorff: with Roland, Yamaha and Alesis instruments and devices, the guitarist adds synthetic rhymes over reverb'd loops and effects that cater to a distinctly otherworldly concern. "Into The Cosmos" is quite the spacemusic exercise, its reined-in dynamics integral to a now decades-old style. The "Lux-Ptah" track sustains a quirky melody which suggests tutorship under Wendy Carlos (the Queen of habitually quirky, classically-derived melodies). A jocular bent is espoused by "Against Time" and its three-note blippy motif, and sappy, randomly-cued FX. "A New Wonder" brings to mind a great many soft-EM tracks that reside somewhere between new age and ambient, its sequential "snowflakes" a hallmark of 1980's synthesists like Suzanne Ciani and Richard Burmer. An industrial m.o. is plied on "Monick" with processed vox, electric bass, and shimmering DX-like tones with sharp, pointed ends. "Lost In A Winter's Dream" is a cool knock off the chillout block, its tranquil air effecting smooth, slowly shifting timbres that belly-crawl over a rhythm-less canvas.

Bottorff's ethic is sound enough, but Beyond The Radar struggles to find its niche in several different subgenres. FSOL-meets-TD-meets-Front 242 sounds like an interesting combination, but not all ingredients blend well or just when they're supposed to. I suspect Radio Dystopia's sophomore outing will be much more accomplished, "espatially" considering the vastly fluctuating temperament of the EM underground scene, which will make up a considerable portion of Radio Dystopia's target audience.


1. March Of The Drones
2. Into The Cosmos
3. The Planet Lux-Ptah Lounge
4. Against Time (The Chase)
5. A New Wonder
6. Approaching The Now
7. Monick
8. Lost In A Winter's Dream

Total time 48:23

Added: October 5th 2004
Reviewer: Elias Granillo
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Hits: 3553
Language: english

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