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Aubergine Machine – “Hostage”

Aubergine Machine – “Hostage”

Aubergine MACHINEAubergine MACHINEIt’s a rarity when I find a SoundCloud song so enjoyable that I have to play it on repeat before writing about it. It’s even more rare for me to listen to all its remixes so enthusiastically. Needless to say, Aubergine Machine’s new single “Hostage” is easy to like. Through its skillful production, vocal work, and ability to steer away from EDM clichés, “Hostage” still holds a hot sound that could make it very popular.

This song doesn’t hit you with a dance-pop beat like other electronic tracks. The synth beginning is melancholic and slow: resembling a futuristic funeral rather than a club. Although there’s a build-up to a heavier beat and lead synth, the song’s frame is still guided by a gloomy chord progression and a beat that’s way too slow for fist pumping. This is not a bad thing.

Aubergine Machine is made up of producer Ian Carey and singer Shanti Ellis. Ellis sings of powerlessness with such artful apathy that it plays into the song’s context perfectly. However, equal credit is due to the production skills of Ian Carey. He makes Ellis’s lyrics clear while keeping the track in motion through layered melodies.

Since electronic music has fallen into such a self-recycling dance trap, I always appreciate when an artist can move past these parameters to make what they want. However, Aubergine Machine is by no means an anti-dance group. Their previous tracks show great versatility with other electronic subsets like deep house, pop, and dubstep. Aubergine Machine has even started on getting remixes, as Brad Holland and Princeton Rejects did a standard but good trance version of “Hostage.”

There’s nothing I really dislike about this group. The only thing I would suggest is to lower-case “machine” from Aubergine MACHINE (as I’ve done for this article…all caps is just too abrasive). Grammar aside, this group’s early proficiency makes me excited to see how they capitalize on their potential.

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Aubergine MACHINE is a collaboration between world-renowned multi-platinum selling producer Ian Carey and newcomer to the scene Shanti Ellis.  They formed the band in late 2012 after realizing their unique capability to create genre-blending electronic music with pop/mainstream appeal.  Having both travelled the world in their own right while picking up many influences along the way, their mental catalog of music includes everything from pre-EDM electronica to the uber-current sounds of post-dubstep and future garage. Ian who is very established in the international House Music scene and has visited more than 60 countries on tour sites influences ranging from Fleetwood Mac, Black Flag and DJ Premier, while Shanti sites influences such as Santigold, Vampire Weekend, and No Doubt. Ian’s production, while cutting edge but not alienating to new listeners, combines with Shanti’s brand of indie-pop laced vocals to build a foundation of melodies that range from youthful to emotive and haunting.  Shanti and Ian like to sum up what they do in their mantra: we make music, love life and laugh sometimes. we are Aubergine MACHINE.


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