The Origin Of Social Disabilities
Info on new project Trauma Phase is scant. Apart from being Polish, there’s not much to be gleaned from either the project’s own social media presence nor that of Detriti Records, who have released an abridged version of The Origin Of Social Disabilities on tape. And of course, part of that label’s appeal has always laid in its knack for sniffing out cutting edge underground acts from around the globe well before any other labels or punters catch wind of them. Regardless of origin story, Trauma Phase arrive with a pretty clearly defined aesthetic on their debut, bringing together new beat, dark electro, and EBM in winsome fashion.
Bouncy and lightly echoing synth bells and chimes ride atop straightforward synth-bass on opener “Withdrawal”, setting up the template the record holds to for most of its duration. While each of the tracks refers to various responses to trauma, it’s difficult to tie the beats or mood of particular tracks to a certain mental or emotional state. Sure, the anhalt rhythm programming of “Anger” has some Ebb-ish piss and vinegar, but that’s offset by the almost dainty keyboards which trill atop it. Similarly, the slightly Kraftwerkian pings which adorn the thudding kicks of “Apathy” suggest plenty of engagement and contemplation.
Thematics aside, the combination of sounds and styles brought together over a tight thirty minutes is what gives the record its charm. There’s just enough of the cold sterility in some of the leads to suggest classic Klinik, a healthy helping of the funk which often guided early electro and EBM rhythms, and a dreamy execution which makes the faintest of nods towards synthwave without any of the correlating pitfalls. The work of Chris Gilbert, specifically his otherworldly new beat Molasar project, is perhaps the closest point of comparison.
The Origin Of Social Disabilities is solid proof-of-concept work for a melange of genres which are rarely brought together. While some of the programming does begin to sound overly familiar and pre-fabbed by the time The Origin Of Social Disabilities is winding down, the album’s energy, bounce, and sense of whimsy (in spite of its titling) make for a welcome debut. I imagine it’ll be interesting to see where an act with this intersection of styles and influences goes from here.