The public seems to have a strange relationship with dark electronic music. They’ll enjoy high caloric popcorn while trembling to the eerie sounds of a Hollywood blockbuster but without the visuals they won’t do so at home. Meanwhile the best in the field have infiltrated the movie business, with former industrialites like SPK’s Graeme Revell and Lustmord’s Brian Williams working on sound design for big budget films including Jurassic Park. In their wake comes Montreal-based i8u whose self-titled CD, from the web company Multimedias Pandora, is among the very best Canada has to offer the subterranean genre of dark-ambience. Her impressive synth atmospherics and speaker-shaking closely tuned drones light the way to a brooding landscape of your own imagination. Don’t miss the Toronto debut of i8u at The Opera House on Saturday, February 12th. – Chris Twomey
Montreal’s premier electronic-music adventurer stakes out new turf with his first Internet-only album. Available through his Web site (www.davidkristian.com) – with a song (Pegel) that’s hot on the MP3 Top 500 – this collection returns Kristian to somewhat more accessible territory. While he’s still in a world all his own, he brings the beats back – subtle, strange rhythmic constructions. Add a universe of knob-twiddled, synthesized sound, then merge the two and you’ve got another notch on the belt of the city’s most prolific sound scientist.
As Kristian himself joked in an interview a couple of weeks ago, female colleague i8u makes him look conservative this time out. Leaving behind beats altogether, the anonymous artist creates cold, dark electronic environments that evoke bad dreams where nothing happens. i8us Web address is www.i8u.com. Kristian: Rating four; I8U: Rating three