album of the month 12/04

hexstatic: master-view - ZenCD92hexstatic: master-view – ZenCD92

what a great cd/dvd. woo. hottdamn. for their second album master-view hexstatic have yet again produced a perfect marriage of sound and video. all the tracks are available on audio cd as well as on a dvd, that includes all videos in 2D, and some even in 3D (and, as you can see, the 3D specs are included!).

3d spec monkey3d spec pop

the whole package, including the layout of the dvd and the prints on the discs, plays off the view-master aesthetic, the classic fisher-price toy used to view images in 3D.
okay, so that is kinda obvious.
what exites me about hexstatic is to see, how they keep evolving. lets not forget that initially these guys started out as the vj’s in the ninja tune roster and in the meantime they are on their second full-length album (third if you count their excellent dj-mix). and they did so without didging their video background, but by adding video to their music as an integral part; often using bits of video as their prime source for their audio samples, maybe with the upcoming video already in mind.

so thats great. but hexstatic did not stop there. compared to their last cd, rewind, they have taken things yet a huge step forward. there is still quite a bit of their trademark vj cut&paste-ing present in their work, but much more exitingly they have now moved into animation and after_effects. and thats a great thing… maybe they have not invented this trend of using flash-animations with music, but it shows that they are in touch with things and that they keep evolving. on two of the tracks they invited two very talented flash-animators to produce the videos, chase me was done by weebl, l-vitra by cheeky beef. both are excellent.

it’s not just about the hip factor though. see, what i find really exiting with videos used in this way is that it adds a whole new level to the listening experience. it adds an image to specific sounds used in a track. so you don’t just get a general visual memory like you get from a watching classic musicvideos, like say windowlicker. this is much more precise. for instance, i am convinced that from now on every single time i’ll hear perfect bird the image of that parrot moving his head to the rhythm and singing with the cutest japanese voice will come to mind. just as whenever i’ll hear salvador (a collaboration with organic audio) i will remember that cutest, toothless, older guy singing in that surprising falsetto voice
and what i also like, is that some tracks are much more subtle in their use of imagery. that track has a very distinct rez feel, from the übercool ps2 game.

see, this is supposed to be an album review and i haven’t even talked about their music yet.
but hey, no need to. because, well, its just really great stuff! musically hexastic have remained refreshingly simple and accesible. they have never been afraid to maybe sound too pop or cheap. unlike, sadly, most of their ninjatune compadres, who are collectivly seeking to out-complicate eachother. so again, the simplicity here is a good thing. hexstatic produce cool, fun, simple, sample-rich music. music that will often get me to try to headbutt as much as that parrot does.

but not a chance. parrot is headbutt master!

most videos should be on preview at (its not working here, but that might have to do with the fact that i am still living in 56k dial-up hell here)

previous albums of the month:
album of the month 11/04
album of the month 10/04
album of the month 08/04
album of the month 07/04
album of the month 06/04
album of the month 05/04
album of the month 04/04
album of the month 03/04
album of the month 02/04
album of the month 01/04
album of the month 12/03
album of the month 11/03
album of the month 10/03

About Jan Zuppinger

Jan Zuppinger has been writing this blog since 2002. He likes to grow vegetables. He likes to eat them too. He has opinions on everything, but sadly no one cares. Jan Zuppinger is not joking, just joking, he is joking, just joking, he's not joking. *click.