By Kavit Sumud | January 15th, 2013
So, you’re a robot inside. Life made you that way, and fuck it if you know another way to get by. But that metal facade rusts, it garners holes, and it fails at times. Particularly at night when you can’t hold the holes with your hands and your mental energy burns furiously in your head, spilling through any avenue it can find. You know those moments when “[you've] got to sit up, for [your] heart to come down” as ‘the Ghost of Christmas Past’ comes through the walls? SBTRKT does.
Recently he dropped a totally NSFW video for his new single, “Trials of The Past“ (off his eponymous LP), detailing just that feeling. In the video, the protagonist goes into a haircut establishment to gruesomely reinstall her faulty passions programming. And her eyes speak volumes: longing, hope, fear, the need for transformation in a hopeless time in your life. And that transformation might involve you morphing into an entirely different person.
Is it permanent? SBTRKT leaves that question to the viewer, but I’m leaning towards no. “Trials of the Past” is all about that moment when you realize you are the only protector ‘of the light inside you.” But there isn’t much time between the moment of reawakening and the moment of rebirth when what’s hurting you slams like a “torpedo cruising in the ocean” into the edges of the sea.
What do you do? How do you survive? SBTRKT sets us up for an emotional sanguination, but leaves us sanguine….
So, all right, consider me a convert to the SBTRKT fanbase. Unlike a number of fellow Shufflers, I never really fell for “Wildfire“ – it just did nothing for me, despite loving Little Dragon and appreciating SBTRKT’s previous remixes. I was always disappointed that I couldn’t share in the SBTRKT love on his first original single. But now I’m a total fanboy. How could I have missed out on this wondrous artist for so long?