Title: Efficient Processes for Synthetic Funk
Artist: Strategic Tape Reserve Staff
Release Date: 2014 Oct 11
Genre: Electronic / Funk
License: CC BY-SA
Label: Strategic Tape Reserve
When I reviewed Shaq Fu: Da Return: Da Return I treated the work as a serious bit of music. However, this release is, by all means, intended to be quite humorous. Efficient Processes for Synthetic Funk is supposed to be an attempt to recreate a cold-war era military experiment. Yup, you read that right. Read on for more.
Efficient Processes for Synthetic Funk
So, it appears that the Efficient Process for Synthetic Funk come from a cursed joint military experiment during the cold war. The lead of the original project was assassinated due to a case of mis-identification. The leader of STR’s project to recreate the original work fell victim of a nasty rash from chemicals on the papers that survived the original experiment. As a result, this version of the experiment was terminated and the documents destroyed. You can read the whole humorous back story on STR’s Efficient Process for Synthetic Funk web page.
However, before having to cancel the recreation project, STR’s staff were able to reconstruct 10 of the original 36 trials. In this case the titles are simply “Trial 1” through “Trial 10”. However, unlike my complaint in the case of VLK’s Shaq Fu, the naming is totally appropriate as they are the same names used for the original experiments.
The results of these trials are available for you to listen to on this release. And, let’s not beat around the bush: these are a lot of fun to listen to. They have all the feeling of primitive analog synthesizers that you might have imagined in the 1950’s-1960’s. These are the sounds of Lost In Space or other early movies and TV shows that adopted the use of synthesizers and theremin as part of their soundtrack.
But, these trials were a bit more advanced than one might have thought. In fact, it has taken artists like Aaron Jasinski and Weldroid to create similar works with modern instruments.
But what if these hadn’t been a recreation of the results of military experiments, as put forth on the STR’s website? These would still be solid, and fun works in the category of a curiosity. The pieces themselves wold stand on their own, however the addition of the story makes it more fun to listen to this release as an overall body of work.
I had some issues with VLK’s Shaq Fu: Da Return: Da Return. I felt that it was supposed to be a humorous take on the original Shaq release. However, I felt that there was insufficient framing of the work and was put off by the naming of the tracks.
However STR got it right on this release. The back story enhances the listening experience in a way that makes the fun that they had making this release shine. The fact that other artists have worked in similar areas makes their approach more interesting.
Just over all, this is a solidly fun listening experience.