Just under a year ago I reviewed an album by qbik, a Romanian artist who made electronica inspired by passages from The Bible. It was an interesting idea which didn’t really translate in musical form. ‘Robots Cry Too’ is another ambitious plot to convince us that we are so reliant on technology now, we’re forgetting about what humans can contribute.
For ‘sweet machine’ you can see what he’s getting at. Beneath the stuttering, glitchy beats and contrasting synth wash (a common theme throughout the record), there’s a vocal loop struggling to be heard; perhaps a young female lost in a world of machinery. ‘nano 0n3’ reveals little sign of humanity whatsoever just a random set of bleeps until it recovers a sense of melody.
‘rmx metals cry’ is one of the better structured tracks as layers of machine music create an unsettling atmosphere whilst the relatively serene ‘mecanik heart’ dispenses with beats and is actually all the better for it. ‘hibrid’, on the other hand, is just plain disorientating like listening to a dozen out of tune clocks duelling with a malfunctioning fridge.
As with his last album, qbik struggles to convey much in the way of emotion but maybe that’s the point since if robots really did monopolise the world, this may be the music they would choose to make. So ‘Robots Cry Too’ is an awkward record to listen to but one with just enough sense of melody to merit a return visit.