Music Review | posted 12.08.2013
Palm / | \ Highway Chase
Escape From New York
Spectrum Spools, 2013
Text Sebastian Hinz , Translation Julia Frohn
Your Rating:
8.5
User (2)
8.8
Editorial
Cover Palm / | \ Highway Chase - Escape From New York

One needs a certain kind of fetish to love this sound, because it’s both attractive and repulsive at the same time. Not knowing whether to laugh or to cry, swinging between shame and curiosity, one finally has to give in to the sound of Palm / | \ Highway Chase. The music sounds like film scores by Harold Faltermeyer (»Beverly Hills Cop«) or Jan Hammer (»Miami Vice«) from the mid-1980s: It’s driven by synthesizers, emphasizing the artificiality of machine-sounds. It’s composed plastics. Not much is known about this release, nor about its creator; only that this music was made in 2009 and not 25 years ago. It’s important to point out this chronological difference, because what once reflected possibilities and borders of sounds, becoming the sound-aesthetics of a new and exciting era, implies a completely different artistic ambition in its recent re-plays. It’s impossible to examine music independent from the time in which it was made. The name of the project itself makes sure that we have the right pictures of palm trees, highways and car chases in out heads. The unconditionality with which the sounds are being copied and revived on »Escape from New York« in nine tracks (hardly ever longer than three and a half minutes) not only serves the referentiality of pop but also the ability to reflect in the field of arts. What do those sounds mean to us today? Unlike 25 years ago, they’ve now lost touch with reality altogether. Instead, the music refers to a phantasmagorial space, so that it even starts to blur in front of the (allegedly) actual reference to the past. Do these images, conjured up by the sounds, actually mirror the reality of 1985? Or were they an illusion even back then? »Escape from New York« plays with your expectations, pulls us back and forth between reality and simulation, between memory and perspective, attracts and rejects. Art in the form of music, music in the form of art.

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