Texture and Asthmatic Astronaut continue to make a formidable duo on this 16-bit cyberpunk double A-side
Texture proclaims himself to be the world’s first cyberpunk rap delivery service while Asthmatic Astronaut has been making critically acclaimed music “on a very old computer” for the better part of 15 years. Two stalwarts of the Scottish hip hop scene could be expected to deliver the goods – and that they have.
The frustratingly titled ‘Robocoppppp’ starts up like a 16-bit scrolling shooter; an outrageously catchy synth riff swells to a climax as Texture’s vocals press start to continue, the booming beat punctuating his impeccably-placed syllables. References to Zero Wing, Gilgamesh, propagandists and nanotech mingle with self-aggrandising and the usual hip hop tropes to create a microcosm of Texture’s previous works (all of which are worth checking out). The obliqueness of the lyrics and the outstanding production makes repeated listens a rewarding experience.
‘3D Eye’ leans deeper into the cyberpunk aesthetic. Texture’s serrated world building snaps into focus; dead gods and Cassandrite prophecies paint a bleak picture over Asthmatic Astronaut’s ominous canvas, like sticking your head out of a flying taxi in Mega-City One to take in the smoggy atmosphere. The oppressive ambience of the track borrows heavily from El-P’s solo work and wouldn’t sound out of place on an Edward Scissortongue release.
Texture and Asthmatic Astronaut have worked together in the past (Elevate in particular is a fantastic piece of work) and hopefully this reinvigoration of the partnership will lead to more cyberpunk shenanigans in the future.