Song Of The Day: Martin Rev, “Rodeo”

Martin Rev was one half of the visionary New York duo Suicide, a duo best described as unclassifiable. An influence on modern-day underground music, they would flitter between existence and dormancy for nearly four decades, sadly coming to an end in 2016 with the passing of vocalist Alan Vega. Both men took their muse on solo excursions, and a recent reissue of Rev’s second solo album, 1985’s Clouds Of Glory, offered us the opportunity to share “Rodeo,” a track we’ve always loved.  On first listen, it might sound like an ungodly mess, disorganized sounds and a cacophony of electronic bleeps and blips. On second listen, though, the organization starts to come through. You’ve got what sounds like samples of video games–either Atari or Arcade, take your pick; I hear both–all the while a straight up Belgian EBM beat pulses underneath. It’s the sort of thing you’d hear a few years later from Front 242, Skinny Puppy, or KMFDM. While in 2019 it might sound slightly dated, at the time it sounded positively futuristic, and it’s definitely evidence that Rev was a true sonic visionary.


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