[Alright, so I'm all over the place with sci-fi/dystopia/cyberpunk literature and cinema. I don't know if I'm the right person to be reviewing this EP. Nevertheless, I did enjoy it.]
Contextually, having watched the Matrix when it first released (in the theatre, in Mumbai, in 1999), I smirked every time my computer professor said ‘Matrix’ in class, though Matrices are not nearly as fulfilling, and also she seemed a little… what’s the word here?… not quite a part of our world! I daydreamed that she’d one day tear open her chest and passed the Matrix on to me, Ultra Magnus (I’m not worthy). Jokes aside, that scene from the 1986 Transformers movie did bring a tear to my eye.
Otherwise, I was always inclined towards regular dystopia, you know, Orwell, Huxley, Burgess. As a 20-year-old, I found the concept of hi-tech/low-life a tad far fetched, when the future seemed just low-life. I’d read Asimov as a child, but watched Robin Williams bring the Andrew character to life in Bicentennial Man, again only in my twenties.
It was in film school in the mid-2000s that my interest in sci-fi and this time cyberpunk, was rekindled, partly due to my newfound obsession with Lynch and side-interests in Asian extreme cinema. During the weekends, I felt no fondness for London’s outdoors and skin-slicing drizzles, so I watched Tetsuo: The Iron Man five times over, maybe more. I couldn’t get enough of it and then came Neuromancer, a copy of which I had picked up for a couple of quid. Then I read Snow Crash and so on, you get the drift. And when I read, I always had something playing in the background. Rob Dougan and The Propellerheads went well with everything. I'm sure that’s why the Wachowskis selected Clubbed to Death (That piano, MAN!) and Spybreak.
I’ve come across very few who need a soundtrack to go with their reading and even less, with their writing. Today, at 5:21 am, as I read and wrote, I listened to Delhi-based Metal guitarist Mohan Kumar AKA Hautewulf's September EP Addicted, the extended version.
The question is but one. What were those eighteen minutes about? How significant has all the name-dropping in the last few paras been to my experience with his EP? Do I need to sputter words like ‘Trippy’ and reflect on the instruments used at different points for the sake of it? Maybe that I need to churn out something before I get back to the activities I’ve gotten so used to since March this year? I.e Ep 6 of some ‘trending’ Netflix Series. (No. Apart from Cobra Kai - actually a YouTube Original - there’s nothing else that I’ve found of particular merit this year.)
Hautewulf’s work has a storyline to it. There’s no denying that it could work well for the stories Mohan would like to tell through his intended comic book series. His March 2020 single I’m the Baddest Punk does fine spliced with his comic book trailer.
This video of the artwork speed painted is, to a large extent, reminiscent of Cyberpunk 2077.
Coming to the Addicted EP, it slid quite well into a variety of notches in my head. There’s a good reason for this and it has everything to do with the mind of an artist and the choices he makes. Which is why one of the first things that came to mind was the Transformers.
While I’m the Baddest Punk possesses the curves and characteristics of the Centurions, this EP is a lot more ‘square and rectangle’ (If that even makes sense, I know I don't a lot of the time). I really don't see it specifically in the Dr. Bruce world, if those are his plans. But maybe I'm wrong because when I listened to I’m the Baddest Punk without referring to any background or additional material, I imagined something a lot different. So now listening to the three tracks from Addicted - Cravings, Different Realities featuring Sonic Shori and Consequences, it intrigues me to know what Hautewulf is going to do with it, visually.