Local love: Android Genius
Photo: Rick Carruth
Houston seems to really be on the futuristic level musically as of late. When I hear national artists, I feel like someone in Houston has either already done it, or is doing it on a completely better level. When it comes to the electronic scene, I’d like to think that the artists we have here are complete game changers. There are several crews that operate alongside individuals who are dropping tracks that are their own thing, and better than what you can hear on the national scale. One of those crews, Prints NotPrince, has a collective of artists that all seem to be several steps ahead of what the rest of the electronic world is up to, One of the lesser known and more influential members from that collective, is Houston’s Android Genius. I’ve been bugging this guy for the last five months to send me his EP the moment he was done with it, and after spending about nine days with it; I can say it was worth the wait. In just four tracks, Android’s “NIRAYA” sets itself apart from pretty much everything else in the genre, while still feeling relatable and easy to get down to.
Getting things started, Android wastes no time with a thick beat to open the first track, “Phra Malaya.” He keeps it all simple while still mixing things up. The oscillated key sounds bring a depth like you’ve never heard before, while the secondary key sounds come off like they’re from fa sci-fi film. A secondary beat track finds it’s way onto the song, while it all mixes together in an orgy of sounds. At one point the thicker beats are removed for a more clap sounding beat that makes you realize quickly why Houston’s Guilla tapped Android to be his DJ. The second song, “Utpalaa” opens with a spacey tone that quickly gets a synth heavy drop note and several layered synths that are accompanied by a bassline that feels like it should be thumping out the trunk of a Cutlass. The song definitely has a future beats vibe that creates its’ own slow groove that sticks in your head while those earlier synths dance from the left to right speakers. Midway through, he recuts the song to form a completely different track that works on all alone before he incorporates the sounds from earlier. It’s definitely an almost spiritual experience that keeps your attention while titillating your senses.
By the third track, “Akuinakka,” Android has hit his stride. The funky and layered textures of this song go far beyond the genre, and create an almost post edm feel. Multitudes of beat tracks that get laced with multiple synths, and even a point where those said synths create a beat all their own…it’s a little intense when you take it all in. Throughout the song, Android never lets up while he tickles your ears with varying synths and beats where some come & go as quickly as they were introduced. By the time you reach the fourth and final song, “Ganbaru,” Android achieves what few artists can do…he has you hooked and wanting more. The song has these little cut up sounds that pop in and out while two different beats emerge and synths cascade throughout the entire song. It almost sounds like what dreams on LSD feel like, if that makes sense. It has this jammed out vibe that you could dance to, make out to, or drop acid and lose who you are to. When those original ploppy sounds return, your ears should be lost in an almost alternate universe that requires another listen.
The only bad thing about “NIRAYA,” is that it is only four songs long. Other than that, it’s a great example of what’s happening here in Houston, and how an artist can make you put their work on repeat where you never get tired of listening. The beauty of it is that with every listen you should find something different from each track. The EP shows that Android Genius is definitely doing his own thing while he proves that the future is something to look forward to. You can grab your own copy of “NIRAYA,” when it drops on February 6th. You can catch Android Genius live on Friday March 27th at Notsuoh with DNCS X WLVS & more.