Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Conkuss - Underground Tension (Pull It Tense)

Hear The Track Here

I think it's time for some 'crappy dark electronica from Oldham' don't you? Hey, don't get started with me, that's how Conkuss describes his music and if you were around for my review of Childish Lessons (October 2006) you'll know that this isn't yer regular MP3 cutie. Conkuss is, in fact, a wicked, wicked man who will corrupt your eyeballs and eardrums as soon as look at you so best be prepared. For those who missed Childish Lessons, it is a 16+ minute aural diatribe against bullying that amply illustrates (aurally at least) what it actually feels like to be bullied. Not an easy peice of music by any stretch but there again Conkuss has NEVER been an easy listen - even when he's trying to be. There is an anger and impatience that comes through in his music like no other artist I know, but often delivered with a razor sharp sense of humour. Put it like this, one look at his MP3 Unsigned site will inform you that this is not life as we know it Jim lad. Moreover, if you think that is strange you REALLY have to visit his own site because it's the eight wonder of the world; wickedly funny and lots to do and see...

Oh yeah, its at

At 4+ minutes this time, I throw myself into the track thinking that this will be a doddle - as if. While I struggle to contain and summarise the actual musical content, a word about production. There's always been a high production standard in Conkuss's work, even stuff from years ago (I have known his work for about 4 years) and of course as time has rolled on, so has his experience and knowledge. As noisy as this artists tracks often are, it's amazing how clearly everything is held in the mix, even when all hell is breaking loose around you. As you can tell, I am having great difficulty (again) describing exactly what Conkuss does that so has me in thrall. One of the chief reasons is because - like his long time oppo Ffabbia (aka The Delivery System) - he has mastered and perfected his very distinctive brand of dark electronica; and that's always a sign of good things in my books. For my money, all this malarky is all about making music in your own image - as it were. Music that has YOUR voice stamped over it No, I'm not just talking about the vocal, but the style. Not that many artists have a known, identifiable style (regardless of genre really) and Conkuss is one of the rare ones.

He threw his toys out of the pram when I rated Childish Lessons as a 6 in MP3 Unsigned's review system and he's gonna have a hissy fit when he discovers I've given this track a much higher rating than that. There is a large and growing audience for the web's musical unsigned oddities and it's gonna be a great pleasure to me to see Conkuss become part of that weird and wonderful crowd. Underground Tension is - as it's title suggests - an edge of the seat job. One of those tracks that intentionally throws you off balance and keeps you there, an exhilarating feeling as it happens. Much more to the point, this is a Conkuss track that has major pulling power. Having spent days hanging out in seedy dives and lap dancers handbags with this old reprobate I have to say it has some wonderfully poised hooks. To be sure it may take a few plays to really start hanging out to dry but it certainly is worth it. The juxtaposition of the two halves of this track will undoubtedly sound strange for a while but before you know it, you won't even notice it. You'll be too busy humming pull it tense, pull it tense. Welcome to the wonderdrome...

Weirdly wonderful. Best Served Loud. Highly Recommended (for originality). (btw Must Have for Conkuss fans)

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