It has been a great year for electronic music. Daft Punk, Boards of Canada, Jon Hopkins, Baths, Disclosure, The Haxan Cloak, Ryhe, and Autre Ne Vuet, Magical Clouds; all great bands with great albums. And with releases from bands like Four Tet still in the tubes, it shows no sign of stopping. That is why I am particularly excited about the new Fuck Buttons LP. In the world of electronic music, Fuck Buttons wield what is perhaps the most expansive sound in the business. Where other djs seek to make two minutes music for murky clubs, Fuck Buttons tunes beg to be played out on the world stage. Basically the John Williams of electronic acts, most of their songs are epic in scale, both in terms of their length and the physicality that the songs exude.
So what of the new album? Fuck Buttons have shown a clear progression from one release to the next. Their first Street Horrrsing could almost be viewed as mixing straight electronic music with hardcore punk. The songs featured gargled screams that can commonly be heard in basements on college campuses, but rarely on successful records. Tarot Sport, its follow up ditched the distorted screaming and focused more on the electronics, a good move by all accounts. The record is cleaner, more professional, and just plain better. The question on everyone’s mind then is whether or not Slow Focus is better, and while that is hard to say, it certainly is bigger.
Fuck Buttons are not a band known for their subtlety, and that certainly persists on Slow Focus. This album is huge in every way; it is music that is as attention grabbing as the name Fuck Buttons is. It is so delightful to find an ambient electronic band that evokes an ambience other then the slow calm one that is the bread and butter of acts like Boards of Canada and Oneohtrix Point Never or the spooky one employed by oOoOO and the like. If you ask me that is what draws people to Fuck Buttons, and Slow Focus delivers. Considering the bands girth, their has always been a formula associated with Fuck Buttons; give their music x amount of attention and receive y amount of satisfaction. They will make you feel things if you give them the chance, and isn’t that the point of listening to music in the first place?
The Fuck Buttons discography is a very well planned and succinct machine. The duo behind the music has done a very good job of making ten minute songs that don’t waste people’s time, and albums that don’t waste people’s money. What more could you really ask for? At the end of the day, Fuck Buttons feel more like artists then they do musicians; they are a band that deserves your dollar. And while Slow Focus may not be quite as great as Tarot Sport is, it is still a damn good record with plenty of appeal.