CD, Tympanik Audio, 2008
Tony Young must be doing something right. Catharsis junkies, be advised, this is your one-way ticket exiting Purgatory. With “Love No Longer Lives Here,” Young’s Autoclav1.1 project confirms the Western world’s ongoing fixation with the crescendo, still strong after centuries of music consumption. The album is a luxuriant testament to escalation and release, its enveloping juxtapositions of euphoria and loneliness – accomplished sans lyrical crutches – stretched over a polished fabric of dark electronics and, shall we say, post-EBM industrial. The overt symphonic and atmospheric influences found in Young’s work lend it an inclination bordering on bombastic. Beats are impeccably constructed, with harmonic development on a grand scale strung across every composition, making for some truly satisfying deep listening.
Bombastic, perhaps, but “Love No Longer Lives Here” is neither overwrought nor pretentious. By turns supple and sullen, and accented by forlorn piano and introspective strings alike, Autoclav1.1 discovers a synergy not quite conspicuous in its passions, but rather ardent in its fascination with the emotive themes imbued in the album’s title. “Love No Longer Lives Here” tells a story, one of heartbreak and descent, indifference and hope, exuberance and madness. It unfolds casually (it’s no coincidence the opening track is called “Casually Losing Selected Memories”), but soon climbs into a thing nakedly beautiful and kinetic, tangible in its raw intimacy.
The music is spacious and panoramic, richly layered and complex, and always reminds its listener of progression and increase and denouement. It surges, crests, washes back and comes again, time after time. The integration of aggressive guitar elements (“All Long Black Spirals” and “We Shatter Sometimes”) lends the album a more visceral feel; gut-wrenching or empowering, take your pick. The rare voices are haunting (“All For You” and “This Stranger Hope”), personifying those indelible moments in life when passion etches the soul. Young’s most effective voice, however, is the piano. Its fluidity and glimmering, sentimental notes are pervasive – and vital to the album’s success. Exemplar track “Six Minutes to Live” is a towering and gentle force, bringing the story to a close at album’s end. Without the piano’s rich utterance, “Love No Longer Lives Here” might be considered too glossy, too aloof, lost in a cold, solitary world of machine comfort, airy strings and enigmatic emotional mechanisms.
— Dutton Hauhart