rxif Advances the Genre on “Accidents”
The artist’s name is rx1f and what he’s doing for electronica, electronic music, and the pretensions of dancing in this genre (or genres) should be studied. It should be noted.
And, as John Doe said in the film Seven, it should be duplicated.
What he’s doing, exactly, is dropping a single for an album slated to come officially into existence in the world on November 13. The single is “Accidents”; the Long Player, r8c180.
The former, however, is unequivocally, almost single-handedly, advancing electronic music from the same rut it’s been stuck in for about, oh, the past 20 years or so.
Specifically, the doldrums of the same ol’ non-drum pattern. That repetitive, you’ve heard it once and you’ve heard it forever, four-on-the-floor endless thudding of kicks, sometimes with snares, but mostly just kicking, and kicking themselves out.
None of that nonsense is going on here. rx has a legitimate drum pattern, kicks and snares, without them plodding atop each other. And, it just so happens to be a doozy of an affair, one of the best elements on this oeuvre, and a symbol of musical sophistication that is way past long overdue for those making this type of music.
The point, however, is rx’s drums sound good—particularly the snare, which is almost always the most compelling instrument in a true drum pattern, which is why that noted two paragraphs up was fallible from the gate. But the snare on “Accidents” is pretty big, and the pattern is vibrant, from the double-timed snares to crunk things during the transitions, to the mere placement of the kicks. Rhythmically, the cut is cogent, and all the more so because when he takes the beat out for frequent breakdowns, when it returns it’s not the same old stuff people have been doing for decades; it’s refreshing and spurs the listener into action.
Other than that, the synths are highly layered on this one, from the delicate, popcorn sounding notes to the swirling prolonged ones. There’s some sort of vocal sample the artist throws in during the hook too that, although it’s not necessarily loud, certainly makes it appear as though someone were yelling, which is perhaps a novel way to amp up sentiment for this part of a record.
Ultimately, what rx1f has done with this single is make that electronic stuff sound unpredictable and use its sonic manipulations to its advantage—which is hard to come by, these days.