Title: Utopia
Artist: Pharmacore
Label: Pavillion36
Catalog No: P36-037
Release Date: 11 January 2010
License: Creative Commons BY-NC-ND

I have to say, this is a first for me.  I had not actually heard of a style listed as “IDM with Drill & Bass influence”.  However, that being said, I don’t find this release to be un-impressive.

The dark, edgy with some more mechanical elements seems somewhat like Future Sound of London meets Nine Inch Nails.  But, this isn’t music that tries to imitate either of these groups.  This is music that is very much in the IDM genre, and builds from that into it’s own form.  Definitely kind of a nightmare meets the robots.

Which is interesting in it’s own respect.  The idea that Utopia is some a dark and mechanistic domain stands apart from the many cliches that have been used to define utopia, and would in many people’s eyes possibly be a dystopia instead.

However, what I feel we have here is something a little different and more engaging than either the cliched utopian or dystopian image.  Instead Pharmacore seems to be challenging us with a journey.  What would appear, at first to be a journey to find utopia: we start with the first track: Metropolis.  From all the way back to the Fitz Lang film, and through the films Bladerunner and Brazil, we see where the ideals of what a futuristic utopia are supposed to be, and the reality of them are quite different.  So, that is where we start in this recording, yearning for escape, yearning to find utopia.

The second track, aptly named, Timebomb, is the push  – that final even that pushes the listener to search for utopia.  However, even that isn’t long lived, as the third track Utopia shows us that even utopia isn’t all that it would seem to be.  So, we have to keep searching for that ideal, keep moving along with others…  We hitch a ride on the Karavan in fourth track.

Eventually, the reality settles in that the search for utopia is a  journey to Nowhere.  And with this realization the strictly ordered reality around us, the rhythms that move us dissolve, and dissipate into nothing.  Thus ends this EP by Pharmacore.

Honestly, one can either call this realism, or pessimism.  While this could be a cynical way of seeing things, I am reminded of a quote:

“Cynic” is what an optimist calls a realist.

Personally, I think this release is a fitting examination of the human mind and human perception of the world around us, just tinted with the Russian perspective.

Of course, the artist would likely say that I am completel full of sh**, and say that this is just a collection of tracks that he had been working on, and sounded good together.  Any thematic or theatrical interpretation is completely a product of my own warped imagination, and should not be assigned to him.  For which, I cannot disagree…  I do have a tendency to over-reach when looking for commonality and unification in a set of pieces such as that.

However, wether I am right or wrong should not diminish your pleasure in listening to these pieces.

Pharmacore: Utopia

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Posted by George De Bruin