Martial Canterel – “You Today” (Stereogum Premiere)

Wierd’s releasing great stuff in 2010 — for those of you interested in dark, icy synthesizer music, the New York “post-wave” label’s brought us Stereogum40 (and black metal enthused) BTW Frank (Just Frank), Montreal trio Automelodi, etc. Longtime fans of minimal synth pop should also recognize the name behind Martial Canterel, the solo project Xeno & Oaklander’s Sean McBride. His packed, layered analog songs are noisy, melancholic anthems for hiding out during sleet storms. (And they feature a catchy, clean glossiness that’d fit perfectly in barely-lit clubs.) As with most Wierd artists, it’s nice checking in on concepts before listening:

Lyrically, the album continues McBride’s exploration of the increasing difficulty in trying to connect with real people and real things as technology renders the material substance of bodies and objects ever more abstract and distant. This yearning for unmediated human contact with the world is appropriately echoed throughout the album by the hands-on, entirely live approach to recording and performance (“the molding of electricity” as he has referred to his compositional technique.)

The first single “You Today” features alienation and one of these searches.

Martial Canterel – “You Today”

01 “Occupy These Terms”
02 “Market”
03 “Sidestreets”
04 “The Empty Sand”
05 “Still a Part”
06 “Some Days”
07 “You Today”
08 “Secret Stores”
09 “Don’t Let Me Go”
10 “Playfair”
11 “For Us”

You Today is out 2/8 via Wierd. The “You Today” single also includes two non-album tracks, “Champion” and “We’ll See.” Expect a second single in January.