Extreme Conditions

Sturqen are Cesar Rodrigues and David Arantes from Portugal, a duo who create art-techno electronica of a fairly remorseless bent. Their 2016 release Cura mused on the theme of cancer, and proposed using their music as an alternative form of chemo-therapy. Today’s record Survivalismo (KVITNU 60) lights on another modern dilemma, the fact that modern man is over-stimulated with a million and one distractions, and that the modern world is confusing and disordered; “how to get through a reality that promotes a continuous epilepsy?” is the way this subtext is expressed in words. In musical terms, they represent this “reality” by simply describing it, and consequently the whole album is an airless trudge through fierce digital pulsations and beats of a grim caste. At least Cura seemed to be suggesting a cure for our ills, but if Survivalismo is intended as a survival kit, it’s not a terribly good one. If you take the view that we need a map to find our way around the latterday nine circles of Hell, then you should try and upload this record to your smartphone and use it instead of Google Maps; this might prepare you for what unspeakable horrors you will find awaiting you around every corner. After that, you’re on your own. (15/10/2018)