Alternative/prog-rock artist Brainsqeezed recently released a brand-new album, I Am Not a Robot, narrating the journey of a robot that deems itself more than merely an artificial intelligence, imagining it has a soul.
Brainsqueezed is the creation of French artist Sébastien Laloue, who in 2013 released a series of demos using the name Emotions, followed by altering some of the songs and writing new material appearing on the album Scarred. Welcomed with open arms by critics, Laloue then moved to Australia, where he began work on I Am Not a Robot.
Encompassing 11-tracks, entry points on the album include “More,” traveling on alt-rock savors topped by Laloue’s deliciously rasping vocals. Vaguely reminiscent of the Eagles’ “James Dean” because of the dense, platinum-colored guitars, the song pumps out thick waves of heady rock.
“Run” opens on drifting, emerging colors topped by the delicate, beguiling voice of Audrey Karrasch, whose voice drips with gorgeous country-flavored timbres. A personal favorite, “Down Under” opens on dirty, growling guitars oozing blues tangs blended with the sleazy gusto of Southern rock. For some reason, the track conjures up Steve Marriott and Humble Pie, primarily due to Laloue’s raw, searing vocals.
“Dawn (Song for Richard Wright)” rolls out on elongated prog-rock surfaces, akin to Pink Floyd. While “Taking Lives” dishes out rumbling percussion topped by dark, heavy guitars roiling with hefty energy. Gravelly vocals imbue the lyrics with dark portent.
The last track, “Black Summer,” chronicles the devastating wildfires in Australia. Clotted, powerful guitars surge with ferocious colors as a braying organ underscores the tune with spilling hues. Strident horns add tight, tense tones, followed by dropping into a dreamy prog-rock melody featuring a dazzling, nomadic guitar. Then the harmonics build, assuming massive resonance.
I Am Not a Robot is, simply put, one of the best prog-rock/alt-rock albums of the year. Sébastien Laloue has it going on!