Music Review | posted 05.12.2013
James Ferraro
NYC, Hell 3:00 AM
Hippos In Tanks, 2013
Text Philipp Kunze , Translation Julia Frohn
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Cover James Ferraro - NYC, Hell 3:00 AM

Is there any soul in this? When first listening to »NYC, Hell 3:00 AM«, it seems as if one’s entire existence has ceased to exist underneath Botox, virtuality and consumerism. You’ll only be able to identify a soul in all this due to its obvious suffering – and that’s what makes this record so very disturbing. Everything seems to shiver, every sound appears to be artificial, life itself is not real anymore. That’s exactly the kind of hell this record is all about – about the fact that there are people hiding behind the flickering screens, the adverts and the surveillance-cameras, illuminating the dark through their red LED-lights. And the people have no choice but to live in that very world. Or do they actually choose to? »Money, Money, Money« is spoken by Mac Book speech commands; »100% sexy« is chanted by it. The voice made of plastic is telling us how artificial we have become. Consumers! This album is nothing to just listen to. James Ferraro composes a frightening here and now in which we first have to find ourselves. Or rather lose ourselves. And then: a few strings, a piano, some solid ground: Humanness at last. Ferraro contrasts these remains with cold house fronts, contrasts his own vocals with those coming from the laptop. Both exists, both is real. All culminating in the impression that this record is trying to warn us: Watch out that the other side doesn’t win! The other side is this: industrial sounds, thudding, beeping. Yet again artificial speech recognition. »Tom Cruise«. In the end, this record is full of soul: We feel it because it’s constantly being threatened. It’s one of the most contemporary records, an actual piece of history.

You’ll soon find »NYC, Hell 3:00 AM« by James Ferraro at hhv.de.
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