As a child, I remember attending the circus on at least one occasion. These days, the way that they treat their animals makes me want to stay away and prevents my son from sharing in that same experience as I did (Though it was never really life changing or anything) The one good thing we can take from the circus though is the music and how everyone kind of knows what you mean when you say “circus music”. Perhaps we should just stop all circus performances from happening and live with only their memories.
“Alienist” begins with an electro circus kind of vibe, and at the same time it sounds as if it is taking place underwater. I can imagine an underwater circus because the typical land animals would just be replaced by underwater animals—they wouldn’t wear snorkels or anything. The lions could be sharks, the elephants could be whales and, well, the seals would still be seals. But how to add in that electric quality without sparks flying is something I’ll leave to your own imagination.
The songs pick up with a little more 1980’s rhythm and they have drum machine percussion and beeps. These loops also bring out the ever so lovely 8bit Morse code sounds that I haven’t really heard before so I’m going to have to say that’s a new one. (Yes, I’ve heard 8bit and yes I’ve heard some tones come off like Morse code, but never combined like this)
On the flip side I hear what I can only describe as glitch ambience. It’s dreamy and there is bass synth drone. I can only equate it all with some kind of wonderful video game. By the end, the sounds are being manipulated as if a guitar cable is being plugged into a live amp. I hear this quite often and feel it must be made by some other means, but I’m going to dub it “plugging into an amp-core” just the same.