The Bouncing Wall/Census EP
In this hyperactive musical landscape, with listeners jumping from one sonic square to another like Q*bert, unless you are selling hundreds of thousands of units or better, you have to keep reminding people of your continued existence. Los Angeles-based three-piece Autolux created one of the most engaging and fascinating discs of 2010, Transit Transit, but the nine months that have passed since its release is a lifetime in the blogosphere. So, to keep people like us talking, they have unleashed a digital-only EP that combines tracks from a 7-inch the band sold on their last European tour and two tracks (the pair that make up the combined title of this single) from their previous full-length.
Of the three unreleased songs, the one that will be of most interest to fans is “23 Watt Apple Juice.” This fantastic instrumental expands on the lush atmospherics of their last album by injecting a slow, simmering beat and relegating the whimpering guitar to background noise. Pay close attention to the other two new tracks though, as they offer up a world of possibilities for both listener and band to explore. The six-and-a-half-minute instrumental “Black Leaves” is a cut-and-paste masterpiece originally recorded for an art installation. It plays delicious games with the stereo field, rolling small pebbles of noise down the left channel and tickling your hippocampus with a glistening stream of melody in the right. Once the programmed beat kicks in and starts bouncing around your headphones, make sure you're sitting down and (relatively) sober. The other is a dark remix of the band's “Kissproof” that reimagines the song as a composition by a punch-drunk PJ Harvey circa To Bring You My Love, all engorged bass and hot pink flashes of inner thigh. In other words: one hell of a sexy beast.