Anthemic:”like an anthem in being rousing or uplifting“. Keeping such knowledge obtained from Professor Google in mind is the best thing when going into Prisms, the debut EP from Sydney’s Infinity Machine. On paper it’s a brisk EP comprised of five tracks, but upon listening it’s an emotionally complex and sonically diverse record that rightfully deserves the title of anthemic. Let’s dive in.
Moving on from dance-rock and settling into the diverse world of synth-rock, Sydney four-piece Infinity Machine give us the sonically rich Prisms EP.
Infinity Machine have been playing together since 2013, and were once known to the world as Ipso Factopus. Good idea with the name change there guys. The newly christened Infinity Machine build on what they established on their first offering Trouble: force feed it a healthy diet of synth-rock and give us Prisms, a sophomore EP that delightfully surpasses their first.
Exploring the realm of synth-rock was a natural progression for the band and it has paid off nicely. Throughout rock’s history some of the most innovative music of the genre has come from bands playing with synths, whether it be Pink Floyd, Nine Inch Nails, Radiohead or LCD Soundsystem. While Infinity Machine isn’t on that level quite yet, they put their best foot forward and it’s a rewarding experience.
Anthemic is the word when it comes to Prisms. The vocals are light and crisp, cutting through the atmosphere with conviction. There’s a sense of drama conveyed in those vocals, as stories of relationships and self doubt wrap themselves around you. Final track Hounds is the most rousing of the bunch, the slow build to a crescendo of layered, anguished vocals that hits the spot nicely.
The music itself is quite varied, taking advantage of the infinite sand-pit that is synth-rock realm to play with as many sounds as possible. The band teeters on the edge of getting carried away, but thankfully know when to reign it in and keep the EP focused. Opener Cycles is the bastard child of Absoultion era Muse, while Electricity leans heavily on the dark, swelling groove that is very familiar to SUBTRKT. Meanwhile the band’s alt-rock roots come through on Unstable, the clean yet melancholy guitars forging a path for the track to follow.
Prisms is an EP with a rich palette that avoids becoming too busy for its own good. The band have toned down the dance-rock aspect of their first EP for something that is far more contemplative and mature. With some decent production behind them, Infinity Machine have dished up a fine successor to synth-rock.