AUTOMATIC - 'Signal' Album review
Instrumentally intriguing - the album would do well in any coming of age film focussing on female empowerment.
ORIGINALITY6.8
LYRICS5.8
REPLAY VALUE6.8
INSTRUMENTATION7.4
IMPACT6.7
6.7Overall Score

 

Automatic are an LA based, all female, indie-punk trio of genius and vague disruption. The band, formed organically in LA’s DIY scene in 2017, have a sound that is vaguely familiar and yet totally unlike anything currently circulating at the moment. Their emphasis is on melody and instrumentation and aggressively simple. Automatic  challenge the typical formula whilst also straddling the line between slightly too repetitive progressions and acceptably memorable. Decidedly cinematic, as opposed to stream cultivating and radio friendly, Automatic are fresh and invigorating. (Yes, the music seems less complex at first listen. But by round two, you’ll be hooked.)

 

The soft vocals juxtapose with the message often conveyed in the lyrics. With some songs talking about being adrift, feeling bored and disappointed with the shallow and false nature of social media personas, the writing is intelligent. At times let down by the lack of emotion put into the vocalisation, the music can seem to blur. For some this might seem like a harsh critique. But with the underlying message of boredom and with the faint sense of disregard for norms, the aggressively cohesive sound works. And with the bands collective backgrounds, ( Lola Dompé – drummer – grew up with music, Izzy Glaudini and her film school knowledge, and Halle Saxon with her cult video store experience) the flowing cinematic soundtrack element of the album becomes obvious

 

With no guitar and sparse singing, synth, bass and drums are a given time to shine. The synth – chosen to combat the ‘masculine energy of the scene and rock music on the radio’ works beautifully to push the cinematic influence into the consciousness of the listener. The bass and drums, both understated, serve to remind the listener of the monotony of life, keeping to a steady beat. There’s enough variation to keep it interesting but if you’re looking for a high energy, thrashing music band, this isn’t it.

 

Calling It’, BG’s favourite song from the album is a brilliant snapshot of this bands style, capturing their essence well. Focussing on the feeling of being adrift and wanting to start over, the song could be described as ‘relatable’. Although with the way that word’s been over used we’ll just call ‘Calling It brilliant and move on.

 

Aggressively indie, singular and vaguely disinterested, Automatic are a band with a lot of potential. 

 

If you like the sound of their music, check out their new album Signal, out now.

 

For more female voices in music, check out Jagara, Orla Gartland, and The Japanese House.

 

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