Bleep to Bleep by The Micronauts (Review)

The sound of a great technical group squeezing every last valid bit of amusement from a synthetic sound.

More of an EP than an album, Bleep to Bleep consists of a bleep and a beat. Tracks one through four merge together into a twelve minute epic, slowly evolving from a simple rhythmic bleep over a house beat to a distorted series of bleeps and wails as the beat sinks into a barrage of clatters and thumps. Both ​“Bleeper_0+2” and ​“Bleep to Bleep” hiss and hum away ambiently, rather like spending a while on a tube station for fun. Muffled noises like machinery yawning behind a wall and electric gadgets sinking in mud drift around quietly. ​“Pt 4” is a short burst of vibrating, growling bleeps over the original beat which suddenly wail and scream acidly at every pitch at once. Each track builds up from the basic ingredients over time, meaning the last two tracks are the most warped, as well as the longest.

The noise may get a little, well, noisy, but it’s never pointlessly punishing. It’s the sound of a great technical group squeezing every last valid bit of amusement from a synthetic sound. For most of its 45 or so minutes, it’s a pounding surge of a dance record — an electronic record you can dance to, how rare! There is no tune, and the tracks are all constructed from the same noise. I have to explain that I obtained my copy from an independent retailer who priced it like a single (£4), but a mainstream record chain had it as a mid-price album (£9). It is great but by no means worth that much, so snap it up if you see it in a bargain bin.

Written by Paul Morton.