Smart, if ultimately bloodless.
Allegedly, NATOarts is an organisation that seeks to promote global security and stability through the arts. And [a]Icebreaker International[/a] have just made a second conceptual work, to promote free and unfettered global trade. How reactionary can you get? Closer inspection, however, reveals Alexander Perls and Simon Break to be pranksters. If it takes an elaborate ruse to get them noticed, they seem to smirk, then so be it.
For all their intellectual vigour, decoy organisations, and, we hope, sarcastic support of global corporate policy, the ambiguous duo hark back to an era when the shock of the new made electronic experiments in music immediately viable. State-of-the-art technology notwithstanding, techno workouts like ‘The Third Way’ and the beguiling guitar loops on ‘North Atlantic’ reflect a regressive sensibility.
The conceptual journey by sea, from ‘Port Of Yokohama’ to the overlong, if hypnotic ‘Port Of Halifax’, is also hampered by a refusal to use local colour to set the scene. Too close to multi-cultural world music for comfort, perhaps. And that’s the idea in a nutshell – a grandiose, symphonic, electro mockery of a capitalist global village where the music speaks with one voice, and only language differences suggest any travel at all. Smart, if ultimately bloodless.