The “Avant Hard” Stylings of Add N to (X) – by Adam Thometz

At least I think it would be called “avant hard.” I don’t know. How would you describe this sound?:

“Avant Hard” is how they describe it but you never know. For example, this guy describes it as “cat-rock” for no apparent reason.

Named after a computing function, Add N to (X) is a three-piece experimental electronica band from London. Their music is played almost entirely on analog synthesizers, as the members of the group are apparently aficionados of old and proto-electronic music, with influences ranging from Emerson, Lake, & Palmer to Iannis Xenakis to Can. Their sound is very flexible and can sound either very harsh or very beautiful. Sometimes their music is somewhere in between but normally, the sound is very harsh. It is quite trippy. The band carries the aesthetic of the analogue synth with them, in their music and their album covers, particularly the cover of On the Wires of Our Nerves.  The band has been given offers from major labels but they’ve turned them down and signed on to Mute Records, a large, respectable indie label. The first song that I posted was certainly quite harsh but here is a more relaxing tune.

In addition to the analog synthesizer aesthetic, their music mainly tackles themes of fetishism. They have also created some pretty explicit music videos, which can be just as outrageous as the music itself (in a good way, of course). Here is one of them: “Metal Fingers in my Body,” which pretty much explains itself. (Warning: slightly NSFW but you probably figured that out from the title)

Or perhaps “Plug Me In,” which features actual porn stars and actual female nipples. (Warning: actually NSFW. In fact, I am surprised that the Youtube police didn’t take it down yet)

Unfortunately, they are no longer active. They’ve had a good ten year run but after things started to pick up with their last album Loud like Nature, one of the members was overwhelmed by the pressures of touring and either quit or got fired. The tour was still done with the other two but then the band broke up afterwards.


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