I Did It
Pink Bunker Ltd.
Chile’s Statische Monotonie have released a plethora of singles, splits, and mixes since the project’s formation just over a year ago. The somewhat frantic and scattershot nature of those first releases ports over to the project’s debut LP, bringing charm and variety. The album art and sloganeering (“Prepare yourself for a new Chilean beat…”) suggests a combo of new beat and giallo sounds, but while elements of those genres are certainly present, I Did It is just as rife with EBM and classic electro-industrial sounds.
While the group’s split release with New Fabrikk suggests an affinity with anhalt EBM, Statische Monotonie’s ethos is nowhere near as strictly regimented as that of their fellow Chileans. Sure, there’s a distinctly retro feel to the record, but it’s one that gleefully hops from sound to sound rather than cleaving to any purist or traditionalist strains. Mission statement track “The New Chilean Beat” plays out like a chopped n’ screwed mix of “No Name, No Slogan”. Even in a number like “Por La Razón O La Fuerza”, made up of the sort of pogoing kicks and bass programming that are throwback body music’s bread and butter, the off-kilter vocal delivery and spacey effects which careen through that core structure add plenty of kooky colour.
The longer the album runs the more Statische Monotonie’s omnivorous nature becomes apparent. The gurgling Remission homage of “Cold Blood” sits alongside the classic acid jack of “Locked Inside”. The experience often feels more like a mixtape than a unified album, but it’s tough to care when the everything and the kitchen sink approach keeps delivering proper grooves and engaging sound design. Check the glass tings of “Tu Nombre” which sound as though they were separately sampled at different pitches (perhaps as a refreshing beverage was being consumed). While quantized, the differences in timbre and clarity from tone to tone adds a rough and tumble organicity to what might otherwise be another rote genre motif.
Regular readers of this site will know that the South American body music scene (and particularly acts from Chile and Colombia) has been wresting attention away from Germany for the past couple of years. Despite the presence and volume of this new wave, as a record like I Did It shows there’s still no sign of it calcifying into a particular sound or style. Hell, Statische Monotonie aren’t sticking with a particular style for more than a single track, and this record’s all the more fun for it.