Dead Boy Robotics
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Dead Boy Robotics

Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom | INDIE

Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom | INDIE
Band Alternative EDM

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"Dead Boy Robotics - Album Review"

If I could say one thing about Dead Boy Robotics’ self titled debut it would be this: it will become music you’ll crave.
Edinburgh electro rock trio Gregor McMillan, Mike Bryant and Paul Bannon have spurned darkly charged minutes which unfold like the audio of equivalent of a suspense filled thriller – intriguing, fear fuelled and immersive. Opener A Broken Y Axis’ sharpened drums and eerie electronic notes quickly set the tone; an attention grabber which layers synths and sounds with a dizzying vocal jumble. A band who like doing things in parts, the foreboding As Children We Fear The Dark Part 1 fuses apt half screams and rising rhythms, it’s shadow bleeding into the later and just as listenable Part 2.
Dance worthy Ever’s back and forth beat halts intermittently to emphasise a flying vocal, with pulsating noises forging new levels in the track. Elsewhere the charged Symmetry of the Elusive Wolves proves a pleasingly mental concoction of stalling synths, reverberating electronic sounds and compelling vocal loops while hardcore screamer Danger Diamonds is a little less satisfying, characterised by robotic vocal interjections.
Highlights include lyrically paradoxical Gatherer on the Threshold, which builds itself up to soundtrack worthy status in dramatic stages and the sublime Do You Know Your Exits– a song you can sink fully into. Droning introduction aside it cleverly interweaves a euphoric rising vocal with faint gothic whispers and layered electro instrumentation, powerful notes and drums at the fore.
It could be easy to overlook fleeting Oblique 1, an actually beautiful orchestral snapshot which sounds ridiculously cinematic or sister track, Oblique 2, closing the album with a whirling, metallic soundscape full of echoes. Both tracks illustrate DBR are producing distinctively original material which is continually evolving. - Glasgow PodcART


"Album Review - Dead Boy Robotics"

Spitting with dark, expansive electro fervour right from the start, this self-titled debut album from Edinburgh trio Dead Boy Robotics is nothing if not ambitious. Opening cut A Broken Y Axis is a thrifty statement of intent that sounds like 65daysofstatic hacking at the innards of the original Dr. Who theme.

Two variations on As Children We Fear the Dark provides some nice balance. Part 1 is all clambering synths, propulsive drums and alternating lullaby/screaming vocals, whilst part 2 breathes some ambient dystopian soundscapes into proceedings. Do You Know Your Exits finds a plateau of Animal Collective vocal harmonies at the nub of its fairly epic structure, providing one of several highlights.

In fact, the songwriting remains solid throughout, a realisation that only seeps through the jagged seams after several listens. A tight run-time ensures this is as machine-like as their name suggests, but there’s certainly plenty of heart to go with it.

**** - The Skinny


"CD reviews - Dead Boy Robotics"

Ahead of the release of their debut album, this Edinburgh trio have been dropping the names of Animal Collective, Liars and HEALTH as influences on their “avant-garde take on electronic music”.

If that sounds rather daunting, don’t worry, because I’m sure there’s a fair bit of Pendulum included too. Granted, Dead Boy Robotics add a more gothic flavour to the thunder of their beats and the distortion of their wall of sound than the Aussies, to the extent you could argue that the roots of certain tracks go back to My Bloody Valentine as much as The Prodigy.

But when they split the opening vocal arrangement of Symmetry Of The Elusive Wolves into four overlapping layers placed a second or two behind each other, what I hear is mediaeval polyphony sung in a desecrated cathedral of noise.

A dark beauty, indeed, with moments of big, dramatic yearning, and evidence that there is at least one band in Scotland other than Errors willing to lead the musical charge without resorting to guitars as weapons.
- The Herald - Scotland


"RELEASE OF THE WEEK - Album review: Dead Boy Robotics"

Here’s some enthralling electronic music from Edinburgh, the trio of Gregor McMillan, Mike Bryant and Paul Bannon producing some quite stunning modern songs.

Dead Boy Robotics have a metallic snarl and sophisticated European sensibilities, and make an anthemic noise fit for festival fist pumping or filling sweaty club dance floors. The densely textured harmony vocals are tribal and intense on Symmetry Of The Elusive Wolves or displaying barely contained fury in flashes on As Children We Fear The Dark Parts 1 & 2, the single Ever, and the machine mash up of Danger Diamonds.

The band evoke the likes of 1980s innovators Hard Corps from France, the Fon label out of Sheffield, or Lowlife out of Grangemouth, while sounding impossibly young and fresh. Current single Gatherer On The Threshold is a delightful collision of melodic ideas overlaying some savage percussion, with a sci-fi monastic flavour, while Do You Know Your Exits is borderline power pop.

DBR have the attack of Intergalactic-era Beastie Boys, without being so brattish about the beats. Both epic and economical, this is the soundtrack for heroics and esoterics – just listen to Oblique Parts 1 & 2 to hear for yourselves. Scotland is bristling with new modern groups, and this trio have what it takes to make their mark and leave a lasting impression.

RELEASE OF THE WEEK

DEAD BOY ROBOTICS

Dead Boy Robotics

**** - Scotland on Sunday


"The Scotch Snap: Dead Boy Robotics breathe life into the circuits"

Expectations are there to be confounded.

You see, I’d heard plenty about Edinburgh three-piece Dead Boy Robotics and had been taken with what I’d soaked in. A friend had again pointed me in the direction of their May release Ever and again I’d nodded sagely and offered my praise. However, there was a nagging worry for me.

The trio have drawn comparisons with the likes of Liars and Animal Collective and, I’ll let you into a massive secret. That worried me. Although I’m a huge fan of Liars’ nihilistic noise-rock, I must be the only person with a serious music habit that was left completely (and routinely) cold by Animal Collective. This scared me.

That doesn’t make me a bad person, honestly. I tried, really, I tried. Ever since 2005’s Feels I have revisited every subsequent album hoping to get what critics and Serious Music Fans everywhere seem to get. And love. And cherish. Everyone else found a warm glow, I felt like I was jumping into a freezing, salty swimming pool of brain dribble. It’s not the only time that I’ve not “got” a hugely critically acclaimed album (see also Joanna Newsom’s Ys and large parts of Bjork’s Homogenic), but it was the first time I was ashamed to admit it. It feels cathartic to say that.

So imagine my surprise when I heard the full record and found that the Dead Boy Robotics album was brilliant and enveloping and immediate and something that you can absolutely love with your cold, winter heart. Taking machine-parts from Songs of Faith and Devotion era Depeche Mode, early 90s industrial music, These New Puritans and do I detect a HR Giger sense of gothic horror? If Blade Runner was re-imagined by Videodrome-era David Cronenberg then this debut would provide a perfectly menacing soundtrack. This atmospheric self titled debut album is released on the 28th of November on Edinburgh’s Tape. - http://www.stv.tv/


"New Music - Dead Boy Robotics"

Dark and joyous at the same time, the Edinburgh trio are one of Scotland's most exciting bands right now. - The Scottish Sun


"Dead Boy Robotics – Gatherer on the Threshold"

Seeing Dead Boy Robotics for the first time was a blinding experience. Not just for going in blind knowing nothing about the trio (at that time duo) but because this is a band that blows you away. Armed with laptops, instruments and a sleeve full of tricks they danced, swung around the stage and wrapped cables around their bodies all while exuding gorgeous electronic music.

Now with a new single out at the end of the month and an album out next month things have never looked so exciting for Dead Boy Robotics. ‘Gatherer on the Threshold’ released on Halloween by TAPE is an intricately complex piece of music. Think of it like a Vogue model; something so editorial that perhaps not everyone will quite ‘get’ but for those of us that do this is easily the most exciting single of the year. The Lara Stone of Glasgow musicians. - http://themusicink.wordpress.com


"Ellis Cameron: In music we trust"

Dead Boy Robotics is also an Edinburgh based band, which consists of Mike Bryant, Gregor McMillan and Paul Bannon. Dead Boy Robotics released their début EP, Tale of the Winter Kids in May 2010, and their début album is due for release in Autumn of this year.

Their music, like The Machine Room, is also incredibly electronic based, and could be compared to Crystal Castles newer material. The band uses a mixture of vocal harmonies, guitars, and of course, the obligatory yelps and screams that electronic and synth music is so famed for. Their music is involving and very dramatic. Dead Boy Robotics command to be listened to, filling the room with intense beats and synths.

Although similar in musical genre to The Machine Room, Dead Boy Robots are heavier on the electronics, big on the beats and the use of musical distortion. Fantastic club music. I could envisage the band’s sounds blaring out from any alternative club on a Saturday night. Perfect to dance to, perfect to drink to, this band has an electric pull which forces you to move, regardless of whether your body wants to or not!

Clearly I’m not the only one who feels this band has a party atmosphere, as they were picked from over 1400 entries to play Scotland’s ever popular T in the Park festival in July 2009, on the unsigned bands stage. Their song Ever, has the same atmospheric sound as The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, crowd pleaser Zero, and I expect to see them performing in much larger venues soon. - Argyll News


"Live Review and pictures: Dead Boy Robotics, Vasquez, Esperi, Enfant Bastard"

Fortunately, headliners Dead Boy Robotics (DBR) have few problems with impact. Fresh from reeling in a new member - Lady North/Dupec skinsman Paul Bannon - and with album number one on the way, the hip-slinging electroneers are finally on the cusp of fulfilling their potential. As their first showing of 2011, tonight is a first chance to get in gear and dust down the studio’s cobwebs. Instead, they choose to blow them away.

Differentiating between DBR tonight and that of two years ago accentuates the strides they’ve made. The rhythmic tautness that intermittently appeared in their once-capricious live outings, now underpins their sound, with tribal percussion rumbling through hyper-rackets like ‘As Children We Fear The Dark’ and new single ‘Ever’. So much for the ineffectual scene-band of yesteryear. DBR Mk II are all about tomorrow.

Bannon’s apoplectic drumming brings welcome cohesion to DBR’s complex structures. His added brawn gives band foremen Gregor Macmillan and Mike Bryant space to explore, both vocally and melodically, instilling fresh drive through their nocturnally-glazed numbers. Macmillan, in particular, takes the freedom in his stride; roaming the floor while yelping doggishly into his mic as aching blasts of guitar fizzle through the room.

At times it could be the sound of Liars caught in an electric-storm; the din of bass and synth clatters around the air before thumping down like a leaden piped assault. By the time closer ‘Danger Diamonds’ has screeched its final screech, The Store is pleading for mercy, ears bleeding and temples pounding. Dead Boy Robotics may have stopped for now, but you get the impression they’ve only just started. - Radar


"Dead Boy Robotics ‘Tale Of The Winter Kids’ EP"

It’s November 2009, it’s the Flying Duck and its Define Pop festival. I am standing amid a crowd of over stimulated musos thirsting over the next band. How little I knew then about the band I’m about to get spaffy over.

Dead Boy Robotics have been creating something of a notable stir around the Scottish music scene for the last 12 months, having entertained at T in the Park and UK bloggers going crazy for them towards the end of last year. Let me also say that having met them very briefly, their polite and well mannered nature reflects nothing of the atmosphere of their music (that’s a compliment). Their blend of laser gun beats and catchy melodies is enough to drive even the most acoustically minded amongst us to the dance floor. It’s refreshing to see them get on stage with both musical and techie instruments which combines to make a thrilling live experience. They bang their drums, they beast the synths and make love to their laptops in front of your eyes, before long they’ve got you pulsating with rushes brought on by tantalisingly techno tones.

Upon the release of their EP you shall find such delectable tracks that defy the very physics of dance music. The lads are self confessed musical experimentalists, and this EP reaks of that. ‘Ghostbones‘ has a Rocksteady filth about it that makes crotch grabbing seem perfectly acceptable, it has a certain hip hop influence with a consistent air of trance throughout it. As fans of PodcART will know, we love a bleep, and DBR know how to use a bleep. In terms of the EP, it’s almost universal in it’s catchment. It’s difficult to imagine which clubs it couldn’t be played in, which is something that further wetted my DBR appetite. As someone who struggles with the term “experimental music” I think that bands should try a little harder to bridge that gap at times. It’s obviously a very fine balance, however I think that here is an EP crafted to suit many tastes yet it still gets a message across “Don’t fear the experimentation!! IT IS YOUR FRIEND”!

The title track “Tale Of Winter Kids” reminds me of the robots in the ‘All Is Full Of Love’ video. It’s by far my favourite track on the release; a colourful and romantic Dubstep love song, it has a bittersweet vocal cradled with some plush, deep bass. If there was ever to be a ‘National Hug Your Amp’ day, this would be the track I’d hug to. It’s the track of the EP that people might find the easiest to connect to.
‘All Sixes and Sevens’ is the only track I have seen live. Energetic and intense, it loses none of its allure in the recording. My favourite thing about watching this song live was literally just watching the 2 of them bang a drum each! Their approach to what they do can be deconstructed down to a desire to make interesting music by whatever means possible. While by no means could it be suggested that they’re the only band to be exploring this, I think their willingness to pursue a life of musical experimentations allows them to have fun with it and not become immersed in what categories people fit them into, as so many self professed Avante-guard bands do.

Finally there is ‘How to Breathe After Telling A Lie’, a crude description of it would be to say that it was post hardcore, when in actual fact it is just so stuffed full of guitars and raw screaming vocals that it’s hard label it at all! It has a distinct new wave/80s feel to it, in fact, indulgently so! Sporting a punk edge to it rhythmically I wonder if the guys would call it their most eclectically influenced song. I wouldn’t be surprised to find that both Gregor and Mike have an extensive 80s collection containing such delights as Ultravox and Depeche Mode. Ah, two men after my own heart!

My only wish for this band is that they continue takes a playful approach to their music. Undoubtedly they are tipped for success. The release of this EP, entitled, ‘Tale Of Winter Kids’, should signify a leap forward in the access people have to their music and really after that it speaks for itself. If you like your bleeps loud, your post-core hard and your bass loud then you can’t go wrong with Dead Boy Robotics. I would urge that you catch them live for dose of undiluted energy that you’ll find hard to tear your eyes from so that you can dance. I have nothing but well wishes for Dead Boy Robotics, genuinely from the bottom of my wired up wrong, electronic heart.

The EP is launched on 6th May in the Voodoo Rooms, Edinburgh. It will be available via the bands MySpace - Glasgow PodcART


"Machine Room & Dead Boy Robotics"

Ever, the offering from Dead Boy Robotics, starts with a wailing, ghostly guitar intro that grinds into a more electronic, synth and vocal-propelled track. The twin vocals of the duo are complimented pretty darn well by the guitar riffs that alternate between power drill breakdowns and spine-tingling cyclical warblings, and it’s easy to see their influences (Animal Collective, Subtle, Liars) at play here. - dauphinmag.com


"Shock of the New investigates Scottish spook-synth duo Dead Boy Robotics"

YOU MAY NOT HAVE HEARD OF
Dead Boy Robotics – a duo from Edinburgh.

IN A NUTSHELL, THEY'RE A BIT LIKE
A euphoric dance floor clash of haunting melancholic pleasure fed on a diet of Crystal Castles and Health.

FROM WHAT WE CAN TELL
They’ve already played T In The Park as an unsigned band - which is no mean feat - and seem certain to explode onto this year's 'summer of synth'.

IT'S ONLY A FIRST DATE, BUT WE'RE THINKING:
They'd fit equally well in a hot hallucinogenic night club or an epic moonlit field. Sweaty and sexy! - Artrocker.tv


"Dead Boy Robotics + The Machine Room Interview"

Dead Boy Robotics offer Ever, a dark and brooding track, with a menacing bass line and cutting synths, that kick in relentlessly as it goes on. The vocals reign wonderfully over proceedings, producing a powerful presence that washes over the song. - Favourite Son (blog)


"The Dirty Dozen – Fucked Up Takeover"

Dead Boy Robotics – Ever (Tape Club Singles No 1, Out Now)

I love the vocal interplay. I'm a sucker for it. And I love talking in songs too. This sounds really cool, but I like electronic music when it's slow, more than when it's a danceable beat. Maybe it's because I hate dancing so fucking much. I just hate rhythmic movement! I can picture – if I was asked to DJ a party – playing this. It would mean people dancing when I'm DJing, as opposed to leaving, which also happens a lot when I DJ.

Verdict: 7/10 - The Skinny


Discography

All releases on iTunes and Spotify

Albums:

Dead Boy Robotics - 'Dead Boy Robotics' (November 28th 2011)

Singles:

'Gathered' (October 31st 2011)

Tape Singles Club #1 - 'Ever/Girly', 7" split single w/ Machine Room (May 23rd 2011)

EPs:

'Tale of the Winter Kids' EP (May 28th 2010)

iTunes:
http://itunes.apple.com/gb/artist/dead-boy-robotics/id370542648

Spotify:
http://open.spotify.com/artist/1F0g0mX0VZr5ziBrv5IWx0

Soundcloud:
http://soundcloud.com/deadboyrobotics

Radio airplay:

BBC Radio 1 Introducing in Scotland with Ally McCrae
BBC Radio 1 Introducing in Scotland with Vic Galloway
BBC Radio 1 Introducing in N. Ireland with Rory McConnell
BBC Radio Scotland - Vic Galloway Show
BBC 6 Music with Tom Robinson
In:Demand Uncut with Jim Gellatly - Forth One
In:Demand Uncut with Jim Gellatly - Tay FM
In:Demand Uncut with Jim Gellatly - Clyde 1

Photos

Bio

Dead Boy Robotics, a three piece from Edinburgh, Scotland, incorporate laptop, synths, guitars, tribal drumming, vocal harmonies, yelps and screams to create atmospheric new wave that is both epic and intense.

Influenced by many bands and musical styles including Animal Collective, Subtle, Liars and HEALTH, the trio of Gregor McMillan, Mike Bryant and Paul Bannon have been highly praised in the Scottish press, on numerous blogs and online zines for their avant-garde take on electronic music.

Since becoming one of only 16 acts cherry-picked from over 1400 entries to play Scotland’s T in the Park festival unsigned band stage in July 2009, Dead Boy Robotics have received air play from renowned DJ’s including Vic Galloway, Jim Gellatly, Tom Robinson, Marion Scott and in May 2011 recorded a live session for Ally McCrae’s BBC Introducing show.

Dead Boy Robotics self-released their debut EP, ‘Tale of the Winter Kids’, in May 2010, to much critical acclaim.

May 2011 saw the release of the single ‘Ever’, a split 7” vinyl with Edinburgh band The Machine Room, as part of Tape Singles Club. This release was again met with much acclaim and was seen by many as another exciting taster of the bands highly anticipated first album.

Their critically acclaimed self-titled debut album was recorded and mixed during the Autumn and Winter months of 2010 at Tape, Edinburgh, by Stephen Watkins. It was released by Brothers Grimm art collective on 28th November 2011 and was preceded by the single ‘Gatherer on the Threshold’, a download only single on 31st October 2011.

Dead Boy Robotics are currently writing material for their second album.