Perhaps it is my over-active imagination, or maybe I’ve watched Toy Story too many times, but I have wondered, on odd occasion, what happens to my gadgets when I’m not around. Do my microwave, fridge and laptop all suddenly spring into life? Do they talk to each other? Do they, like whales, sing? And if they did, what would it sound like?
One possible answer to that question is found on Max Bondi‘s Convolution; I can’t help but think this is music made by a choir of household appliances humming – maybe singing – after dark. The diodes start glowing on the opening tracks before the machines gradually warm up and have a real chatter to each other, bleeps and burbles buzzing back and forth across the stereo plain. Like waves rippling in a pool and bouncing off one another producing a stronger effect, the synth sounds increase in intensity over the ten tracks, reaching their most effective moment on track 8, “Mach-Zehnder”.
This is electronic music in its purest form, and it’s almost as if Max Bondi didn’t need to be present when it happened, which of course underlines the seemingly effortless nature of these compositions – counter to the electricity sparking around, this is very organic music. For all of the suggestion that Convolution is the sound of machines operating independently, this is an album full of warmth and humanity. Try it – you may never look at your toaster in the same way afterwards. (Jeremy Bye)