Album Review

Sweat Sweat Sweat

Sweat Sweat Sweat

By LX Sweat

Not Not Fun
8 / 10
25th July 2012

By Martyn Pepperell


From the moment you lay your eyes on the hyper sexualised early 90s cover art of German producer LX Sweat's debut mini-LP Sweat Sweat Sweat, the creative wellspring he taps into becomes fairly obvious; only to be reinforced by the first listen. Harkening back to the days of movies and television shows such as Total Recall and Miami Vice, his aesthetic evokes humid, crowded spaces dripping in sweat, equal portions nanotechnology and melodramatic daytime soap opera.

Musically speaking, LX Sweat reinforces this imagery though handcrafting grainy, keyboard and vocoder heavy musical superstructures. Eight songs deep, LX Sweat's compositions ride an intersection between conventional RnB, classic soul, electronic noise music and the oft imitated lo-fi cassette field recording aesthetic. Metaphorically dipped in a stacked up white polystyrene cup full of promethazine-codeine mixed with sprite (purple dank as they call it), the songs sometimes move at a subdued, sloth like pace (an obvious homage to the screw music philosophies of, no pun intended, Houston's dearly departed DJ Screw).

Working with the result base song bodies are as colourful, warm and sweaty as the crowd inside a rave made up of tribal space explorers living within a future dystopian society, or to be less abstract, a Helter Skelter party in 1993. LX Sweat rounds these forms out with steady, brightly toned vocoder voice work, and the odd dose of screwed down hypnotic soul vocal samples. At crux it's the sort of music you almost have to not pay attention to, to really pay attention to, the eroticised messages conveyed by the artwork, album name (and even the artist name LX Sweat) are matched up by song titles such as 'Touch Your Body', 'Mess Around', 'I Know You Want It' and 'How I Feel/Jack Your Body'.

All clocking in at around the two to five minute length range, Sweat Sweat Sweat should be a succinct, simple listen. However, thanks to the screwed textures and droning noise elements, time seems to expand contract at will. Kicking off with the excellent stargazed textures of 'Touch Your Body', things hit a ruptured hypnotic apex on the 'Mess Around', driven by a perfectly keyed in refrain "All You Really Wanna Do". 'I Know You Want It' pulls things into a more subdued spa pool space, before 'How I Feel/Jack Your Body' takes us on a dubby journey though a virtual reality reinterpretation of club music. 'Doom Funk' pushes things into a deeply synthetic space. 'Tread Your Right' revisits a headspace similar to 'Touch Your Body' and 'Way Of Life' pushes LX Sweat's sound to its most expansive and sprawling, creating a sonic sketch where the lines come right off the page, while murmured spoken word new wave vocals sit in the distance.

Finally, with the subterranean bass smudges and lurching sewer march of 'Show Is Over', LX Sweat well and truly closes down the party. It's 5am, all that's left on the dance floor is zombies and despite all the tense energy present in the room earlier, nobody left "awake" is getting laid.






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