Download-only, Artificial Music Machine, 2007
Thematically occultist in nature, the debut by this Austin-based trio is a curious affair. As usual, the armoury is stocked with a variety of synths and a plethora of lord-knows-what mixed into the pot to create a stream of eclectic and ominous absorbing drones teetering along with flashes of organic sounds that seem to be the standard within this genre.
Self-styled experimentalism in this fashion is always a beast that is hard to pin down with any great effect. I have countless albums at home that either inspire or fall flat on their face through sheer lack of talent. It takes more than just being able to push some buttons, hit some pots and pans, and turn up the reverb to make music of this style and get away with it. It’s a scene that has more pointless “acts” drifting around its corridors than most; such is the temptation to fart about with art than actually create something with any value.
Luckily, Numbers On The Mast have a grasp of what they are doing. Genuine effort has been made to eke out atmosphere and somehow try to tap into the subconscious of those who will give them their stage, and credit where credit is due, they do manage this to a fair extent. However, this is for purists of this genre only and not for the uninitiated, as the casual listener may find this laborious and a steep test pf patience. Somehow, though, I don’t feel that NOTM really care about that type of individual anyway.
— Tony Young