Boomkat Product Review:
Russell Haswell serves vacuum-tight production for Sarah Froelich and Philip Best’s alternately piercing/soberly observant vocals in their 3rd album together as Consumer Electronics, and their first since relocating from London to San Francisco…
In ’Airless Space’ the grizzly trio recalibrate their shrewd gaze from the pre-Brexitlands of 2014’s ‘Estuary English’ to the thick of an unprecedented time in USA, which is currently in the process of fulfilling the dystopian, apocalyptic America of 2020 prophesised in countless films, books and artworks.
Trust CE to grasp the zeitgeist with bare hands in their particular style, with Best and Froelich trading the mic to mete out nearly 60 minutes of wryly sardonic side-eyes at the state of it all, while Haswell variously punctuates the negative space with a palette of bolshy bass drums and noise, or turns the vocals into gargling gurns of bestial wretchedness.
If we’re playing favourites, the increasingly throttled 13 minutes of vitriol and pranging n0!ze jabs in ‘Muder of JJ’ is substantial, while Best is at his most unsettling with the unflinching cool delivery of ‘Carnage Mechanics’, and they come together most fiercely when the vocalists trade the mic over pelting rhythm and bone-twanging twitches in ‘Play Therapy’, with Best uttering the truest lines: “Stay indoors all day, that’s what i do these days / Never leave the house if I can help it/ why would i fucking want to?”