Exposé Online banner

Vectrexcentricity — Lifelike Boy Android
(Bandcamp no#, 2016, DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2017-01-23

Lifelike Boy Android Cover art

Seeing the names on the cover of this release might very well lead to confusion — at least for those familiar with any of them. To fans of progressive rock, Michael Manring is most likely the best known. His masterful work on bass has graced a boatload of great albums from the technical shredding of McGill / Manring / Stevens, the RIO of A Triggering Myth, the world fusion of Barry Cleveland, and whatever you want to call Attention Deficit. But he’s always had a softer side, as with Cloud Chamber and his early Windham Hill releases. Killick Hinds is more known in avant-garde circles for his experimental guitar (and guitar-like creations), which often ranges into atonal, chaotic craziness, whether acoustic or amplified. So what do you get when you put these two together with a drummer for recording sessions? Manring’s fretless bass is generally dominant when he’s playing, and he’s in a generally melodic mood for these eight tracks, calling to mind Mick Karn, John Giblin, and Jaco Pastorius. Hinds provides more in the way of mood and atmosphere than standout playing with his fretless guitar and electronics. There are long quiet passages of indistinct sounds, sections that lock into a groove and go with it for a while, and odd electronic parts that sound like nothing else. “HyperVotilation” is one of the latter, four minutes of unison guitar / bass arpeggios accompanied by processed vocals while the drums provide cross rhythms that sometimes work with and sometimes against the continuous unison line. “Vertical Sloper” sounds a bit like a freaky outtake from a Police session that never got vocals. And anytime there’s a brief hint of a Torn / Karn / Bozzio vibe, something weird will happen. For one thing, Jamie DeRevere is a much jazzier drummer than Terry Bozzio, and plays a compact kit without any percussive augmentation. For another, Hinds goes a different way than David Torn in his expansion of the guitar’s palette. And at times there is a prominent electronic component, as with the rapid arpeggios of “Famicomcretion.” Lifelike Boy Android is the result of three talented musicians getting together with no preconceptions or stylistic limitations and coming up with something new that only they could have created. Life should be an adventure, and so should music. But don’t be put off if the first listen doesn’t click, and give it a chance. It’s well worth the time and effort.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Erik Hinds (Killick), Michael Manring, Vectrexcentricity

More info
http://killick.bandcamp.com/album/lifelike-boy-android

Latest news

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Shylock - Gialorgues – Most prog bands that came out of France in the 70s had something stylistically in common: a minimalist approach. Not minimalist in the sense of Philip Glass, say, but rather a profound thematic...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues