Android Genius Releases Album Ahead of Scheduleandroid genius, Photo: Peter Gannushkin
Houston’s android genius doesn’t do things like most people in music today. The elusive producer spent part of this year trying to get removed from an awards category, he plays very infrequently, and his new album, “/\” drops today a week ahead of schedule. On it, the darker side of his personality comes through while he segues between using newer sounds and beats than what you’ve come to know him for.
The album kicks off with the oddly titled “aplu,” where the producer mixes beat sequences together to form one beat. The way he mixes claps and deep bass with a darker and more atmospheric soundscape is pretty magical. The plucky little synths he had become known for are darker and less frequent than previous releases, adding a depth to his work like never before. The track is short that it’s almost over before it begins. It’s followed by the much heavier sounding “yokai,” where we immediately notice that the producer has stepped up his game. The synth has a rich undertone that stays constant while a higher-pitched synth pirouettes atop the track. His use of electronic piano sounds to slice through the snappy beat is a masterful choice, though the song comes to an end around the two minute mark, making it feel closer to a taste of what’s on deck. That taste comes with the bass heavy jam of the third song, “sanpell.” Like much of this release, android mixes multiple synths with a snappier beat that has fills and a bass that could blow your system. The chorus gets seasoned with some of the producer’s more signature synth grooves, adding to the overall appeal of the track.
“/\” Cover, Artwork: Brandie Barriga
Around the fourth track, “melk,” you begin to hear a leaner android genius appear. The craft behind just the opening of the song has an otherworldly feel, while the producer mixes multiple beats with an underlit bass that grooves like a slow orgasm. Multiple synths that greet you at every turn sway throughout, while he holds your attention by blending beat patterns in a fresh and vibrant way. The same could be said about the fifth track, “stray.” While the song has a brighter and more upbeat vibe, he quickly brings synths to craft more of a beat while two separate beats are formed alongside them. At one point, those synths change places for the song to begin anew, before returning to the song’s original structure. The release is closed off with the spaced out feel of “writhe,” which is the closest to genius’ previous releases. There’s this “god-like” feeling to the whole track while he finds a way to sneak multiple beats, a deep bass track, and varying synths on and off the song while it grooves along. The drip drop synths that genius has become known for are still present in a darker and richer form, while he grows the track into more of a dancier vibe than those previously found on the album.
The end result is an artist who’s taken the next step towards growth while keeping elements of their original sound intact. In six short songs, android genius proves that he can step up his game while going to places no one expected, and still keep you grooving the whole time. You can grab a copy of “/\” here, or catch android genius with his side project with birdmagic, FLOODS at Spiderhouse Ballroom for the feedback alliance showcase in Austin on November 12.