Chicago-based Alex Barnett had remained under the radar until last year, when he unleashed four striking synth tapes known as the Section series for labels Catholic Tapes, Nihilist, Pizza Night and Chronic Boom Soundsystem. Primarily focused on his work with noise band Oakeater over the past few years, he has secretly been crafting his own solo vision. Taking hints from classic synth soundtrack visionaries, his music takes the form of brooding b-movie soundtrack miniatures, but without the use of sequencers (in his live performances you'll find him juggling multiple keyboards).
Push stays true to the dark synth roots of Barnett's previous releases, utilizing duration and repetition to build powerful music from simple yet heavy progressions. The side-length title track opens up with a pensive set of keyboard stabs, slowly transforming into an ultra-badass hijacker jam with a minimal techno undercurrent. On side B, "Temple"s creeping midnight brawler fuses strings with crumbling synth patches to give rise to an ominous stalker death stare, while "Unseen Forces" continues where the first side left off, another heavy cut for the sketchers that haunt the Chicago nights.
[C20 TAPE :: pro-dubbed, imprinted, edition of 200]
Artist website: alex-barnett.blogspot.com