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 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Future Loop Foundation
Memories From A Fading Room
Louisiana

Rating: 7.8/10 ?


July 19, 2007
Mark Barrott, known around the way as Future Loop Foundation, is the prototypical electronic lifer. Growing up in Sheffield, UK, as a 13-year old he became profoundly impressed when he witnessed a live performance by Kraftwerk. Since then, in his own career, Barrott has dabbled in every genre this side of Roland-drum and bass, jungle, techno, and ambient. In the last decade he has released six proper albums, another six or so shorter-running 10- or 12-inch releases, and a handful of remixes.

Future Loop Foundation, birthing the full-length album Memories From A Fading Room and the EP Sunshine Philosophy, is crossing even more frontiers for Barrott. Both are sustained in large part by atmospherics: melodic synth parts, airy drum programming, and spoken-word samples of British children and old folks.

Sunshine Philosophy, built around the track of the same title from Memories From A Fading Room, is essentially an album single boxed up with three varied (Rob da Bank vs. Chris Coco, Hiem Tokyo 3am mix, and Beauty Room remix) remixes of tracks which, uhm, also appear on the album. Worthy of a collective 6/10 rating, Sunshine Philosophy's three tracks - "Sunshine Philosophy," "Garden Communities," and "Everything As It Should Be" - are album cuts interpreted in new styles - big beat, dance, and glitch rock, respectively - and offer alternate vignettes of songs you probably haven't heard yet anyways.

To date it would have been rose-colored speculation to rank Future Loop Foundation as a heavyweight - or even really a welterweight, really - in the electronic music world. That said, Memories From A Fading Room is a new release that should be taken seriously. The album's successfully creative formula, which reverts to the sampler, drum machine, and a couple of keyboards/piano in the toolbox of Barrott's infant days in the songcraft, works in greatest part because the music flows so fluidly; often tunes segue seamlessly into one another and use similar effects/sounds/instrumentation between them. While playing, Memories From A Fading Room cruises through track 10, "Sunshine Philosophy," gliding as if on rails. Eight of the first nine songs are less than four and a half minutes, and many of them run similar string section airy backdrop chords, as well as a constant dialogue from any number of eccentric vintage British sound clips, and glitchy (but not really) instrumentation that sounds quite a bit like the underground impressive Minotaur Shock.

Although Memories From A Fading Room may not be a critical beacon, it is a sturdy symbol of nostalgic inspiration in an electronic artist's career. He had to dive deep into his back catalog to get there, but with this album Mark Barrott has delivered a gaggle of solid cuts. While not stuffed with football stadium dance anthems, Memories From A Fading Room is certainly a package complete enough to warm up to, so long as people are still giving Barrott a chance.

Reviewed by Josh Zanger
Joshua Ian Zanger, a native of rural Chicago, rocks many a world with his writing, style, and generally sweet aroma.

See other reviews by Josh Zanger

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