A CD including a computer game, packaged in a Super Nintendo-style replica cartridge box?! If anything can be said about Tetrix, it?s that they?re original.
Tetrix are a Canadian four-piece, specializing in a fractured scuzz rock, with strong elements of hip-hop and electronics. I know that that may not sound too appealing, but they sway far enough away from a polished production and conventionalism that it becomes an increasingly interesting listening experience.
Commencing with ?Newyork?, the track opens with an electrocised buzz, scattered guitar and drum beat. The vocal initially falls out of focus, dragging it into a hip-hop-tinged song with irregular rhythm and added fuzz. ?Blackcat?, one of the standout tracks, is implanted on a stratum of buzzing and beats, with impassioned, almost clerical shout-out vocals, and a tinkling glitch surrounding it all. The music in general tends to move in and out of the frame, which leaves it all feeling slightly messy. ?Braindrain? is another of the greater songs, and again the vocal styling differs; it opts more for a Robert Smith of the Cure-esque cry-out, and a conventional guitar rhythm, still engulfed by the hum that underlies the whole album. The instrumental ?Odinseyez? is a warm, welcomed intrusion, mild fuzz-filled noise saturating the air. The scuzz-filled disjointed ?Centz? has great rhythmic vocals in coordination with the backing tune.
The finale of ?Thunderstorm? finds the gently-reverbed, occasionally-warped singing voice placed over a subtley pulsating, penetrating beat; it is sparse to begin, but eventually succumbs, and is drowned out by the expanding, crackling noise and broken electronics.
?Tetrix 5? is a surprisingly compelling listen, and while maybe not instantly accessible, it has longevity and will grow favourably on the listener. You?d be advised to invest some time in Tetrix; you?ll be duly rewarded.
Simply put: Tetrix are the bastardised children of the cartridge game generation, and this is homage to their illegitimate fathers. 8/10 -- James Clarke (31 July, 2006)