Friday, November 20, 2015


I've no doubt that among those of discerning, musical tastes, a bond of some sort must exist with Bedtime for Robots.  If not, one certainly should. 

Bedtime is the brain child of Love in Reverse front man, Michael Ferentino, and like the legendary rock band that rose into the '90s, this creation is unique, diverse and impossible to shake--not that anyone who's had a Bedtime sampling would ever discard its hypnotic draw. Once you listen, you're enslaved, but in the best possible way, for the mechanical sweeps will entrap, unhinge and coddle you, all at the same time. 

Perhaps the best way to comprehend Bedtime's music is to recall the atmospheric pinnacle of Tangerine Dream combined with John Carpenter's synthesized scores, though seasoned with the shameless smatterings of guitar-licked "industrial noise". Such may, therefore, imply that Ferentino's music is disturbing, which at times it is, but his compositions are also eccentrically whimsical in their diversity, triggering moments of both dark and light, of hope and despair, of life and death...that is, the essence of the of the human (and inhuman) condition. 

"Music from an Undisclosed Location" is Ferentino's latest Bedtime treat. As with Bedtime's "Creepyland", the dark, autumnal side predominates here. That's only because "Undisclosed" wholly embraces the horror genre for its inspiration. Its expansive, prickling chords and sulky dispositions substantiate this deduction.

Such components are most evident in "Motorcycle Death Song: Tampa Chain Saw Mix" (recorded with Craig Manga as a shared effort with Mangabros). The track invokes images of careening wheels and the frantic panic of an early Tobe Hooper film. (Check out the video on YouTube, if you dare.) "Motorcycle" is, therefore, an audio version of an image that's too damn morbid to shun; and that a listener will be inclined to re-experience it only proves the Nietzsche claim: "That which does not kill us, makes us stronger." Ah, what a devilish inspiration, Mr. Ferentino!

The haunting "Oct5", however, might be my favorite among the macabre selections. It sets a disquieting intro that might accompany an obstacle-ridden, Snake Plissken mission. However, as the composition progresses, a clanging, underlying rift numbs the pace and then an ethereal quality ensues, becoming much like a "Doctor Who" anthem (and I'm thinking something akin to "Brain of Morbius", mind you). In any event, "Oct5" is an astonishing concoction, which probably wouldn't click in less talented hands, but Ferentino has the required spark of mad genius to make it work. 

The album's other tracks utilize similar esoteric variances, which spring like unveiled secrets from some Faustian pact, and no better track to epitomize such than the one called "Faust": ever-so-eerie and in the most morose of Murnau modes. 

Sometimes the tracks invoke the shadowed dangers of Mario Bava and Ridley Scott, as in the unnerving title track or with the numbing "Spine"; "Prong" and the extraordinarily escalating "Field of Fireflies", which also plays like a forlorn, jazzy Christmas song of sorts. At other times, they're more in tune with the Euro salaciousness of Jess Franco, as with the sensual "Before"; the hip "Pumpkinfist"; and the exotic "Turn Down the Sky". In other instances, they convey the visceral viciousness of Dario Argento, as evidenced by the foreboding "Missing Face"and the slashing strum of "El Diablo Guitarra"(an indisputable, cruising epic if ever there was one, my friends). 

In each inebriating instance, the fizzing ingredients will both pacify and terrify, prompting all the necessary highs and lows of mortal--or dare I say, robotic?--experience.

Of course, the above assessments constitute only my particular vantage. As with any form of quality music, it's up to the listener to elicit his/her own reactions and consequences from the content. This album will, therefore, make a unique imprint on any open mind, and therefore, it's easy to make "Undisclosed" your personal soundtrack. 

"Undisclosed" is presently available through WEATNU Records and Bandcamp, but will soon expand to other bases, like I implore you to consider its purchase. By listening, you're certain to explore the range of your inner depths, face your fears, conjure your courage and in the end, be a far better entity for it.

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