Sven Atterton

Hi gang! Abbie here, Editorial Director comin’ at ya with Editors’ Den‘s first entry! This is so exciting; I feel like I should smash a bottle of champagne against the building I’m in. But that’s wasteful, in terms of hydration and finances, so I’m not going to do that and instead will relay my process of finding some weird, obscure jams to talk about.

I started by going to bandcamp.com and selecting its “discover” tab. I was given some options—did I want Best Selling, Staff Picks, New Arrivals, Artist Recommendations, or did I want to browse genres? Did I want to decide by way of musical format?

I went two ways: I chose funk, and I chose cassette format. This led me to Sven Atterton, an artist from London who wants to transport his listeners through the universe via a wave of sound. That seems pretty ambitious to me.

His album The Cove is decently composed (and by that it means it contains many elements) and sounds like it was probably expensive to produce (although GarageBand can be deceiving), but I’m wondering how on earth this sounds on a cassette. Probably not great. There’s some subtle ocean mist sounds happening in the opening/titular track that  would sound like sub-par white noise on a cassette player. That’s definitely not what’s intended, considering whoever wrote Atterton’s bandcamp bio says “You can almost feel the ocean mist on your face.”

I gotta admit, I’m not feeling too much mist over here. This funk-tastic bass is far more reminiscent of a mildly seedy, underground bar than an ocean. If there were a seedy, underground bar on a beach somewhere, maybe the shadier parts of California or something, I’d get the ocean mist reference, but otherwise it’s sort of baffling in how inaccurate it seems.

“Prime Time” is making me feel a lot like I’m watching cable TV at 3 a.m. in 1986; the local fire department ad is soaking up airtime as I stare blankly at the screen, waiting for something more interesting to come along while my fried brain slowly smokes out of my ears.

One song passed by without notice as I was conducting other business on the Interwebs, and now I’ve reached track four, “Always Remember.” Atterton has upped the ante significantly in this jam, but it’s still just another instrumental track and they’re all beginning to blend together at this point. I can’t do this anymore; I’m switching albums.

Interesting: Atterton could afford to print 100 cassette tapes and 500 vinyl, and there’s a fat red text that reads “SOLD OUT” on The Cove‘s bandcamp. Is that for real? Can anyone just write that, regardless of its truth, and try to up the hype? Not to be a prick, but I’m having trouble thinking anyone would spend $10 on a physical copy of this music. This honestly sounds like the kind of stuff a DJ would cut and sample in their own tunes, so why buy a physical copy when a digital edition will do just fine?

Bandcamp didn’t seem to have much more of Atterton’s work, so I went to Google which brought me to his Soundcloud. I’m listening to a song called “Vapor” which includes this Daft Punk-wannabe robotic incantation. My neighbors probably think I’m snorting ecstasy and painting myself with glow paint. I promise I’m not.

Okay, this is officially mind-numbing. I’ve found myself in a dark and scary Internet hole. I’m escaping. I’m getting out of here. I feel dirty, frightened and alone. If I was influenced by drugs and in a poorly lit, smoky room with writhing bodies and some ass-kicking combat boots on I’d probably feel better about what I’m listening to, but that’s not the case.

So long, Sven Atterton. Thanks for the headache.

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