Thanks to the mind-bruising electronic throwdowns issued under the SSLEEPERHOLD moniker, Austin’s José Cota stands out within the remarkably cohesive roster of Holodeck Records as a solitary analog warlord — at once indebted to the John Carpenter horror synth aesthetics the label favors, and interested in exploiting the paradoxically liberating limitations of hardware-based composition in the digital era. Back before SSLEEPERHOLD, however, Cota explored the dark/cold wave idiom as part of the now defunct Medio Mutante project, along with vocalist and synthesist Mariana Saldaña (formerly of //TENSE//). As the duo BOAN, Cota and Saldaña join forces and MIDI cables once again — colluding their strains of post-80s electronics into the pulsing sessions of the Mentiras LP.

BOAN boils down the winding song structures typical of Cota’s solo work into relatively linear forms, streamlining his typical aggression into a format closer to the synth pop tradition. As Cota’s bone-thick bass grid pounds out over heavy snare hits and whistling synth chords, Saldaña’s vocals find space in the center of the mix to transfix our attention. Her syncopated delivery doles out each word as a morsel of detached judgment, describing an unnamed target as only an image of a man, a pure lie, an illusion. Her icy vocal proclamations — akin to those of labelmate Marie Davidson — animate the production into a cyborg amalgam, occupied as much with the parsing of real human emotions as the execution of some auditory reconnaissance mission through factories and bunkers way behind enemy lines.

You can pre-order Mentiras from Holodeck Records now.

• BOAN: https://www.facebook.com/pages/BOAN/109780689145792
• Holodeck Records: http://holodeckrecords.com/

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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